Discussion in 'Off Topic' started by Amstell_s Bitch, Sep 10, 2006.
I tend to struggle to connect with middle class protagonists in fiction.
I watched the first 2 episodes of Foundation and now I'm curious to read the books.
I looked into it and saw there were about a bajillion books to catch up on and also saw there were various debates on the order they should be read in. So I don't really know where to start.
I just finished the second one! I'm going by publication order, which would be:
Foundation and Empire
Foundation and Earth
Prelude to Foundation
Forward the Foundation
The first three books are the main trilogy that he published as "short stories" for Astounding Magazine in the 50's. It wasn't until the 80's that he added the sequels and prequels. Apparently the Robot series (I, Robot, The Bicentennial Man, etc.) are also set in the same universe, but I haven't dabbed into those yet.
I feel like, at certain points, we get glimpses of this hypothetical meta novel that could have been, a Rachel Cusk esque piece of auto-fiction. But, for whatever reason, it’s not committed to (I’d argue the novel never really commits to one thing or another thus ends up a bit of an unsatisfying mish-mash of a few things) and instead we get (like you mentioned) a crowd-pleasing replay of the “best bits” of her previous novels.
It’s kind of a waste. I mean, I get to the end of the novel not really feeling like I know anything of Alice. Her overwhelming fame and debilitating success seem merely like something for Felix to react to instead of something explored through Alice’s own thoughts and feelings.
Fair enough. ‘Felix’ is probably a bit suspect but he’s actually a working class character.
Alice feels like a pretty regular name to me though. I went to a comprehensive and there was more than one Alice!
I might try reading Normal People first and see if I enjoy Rooney's writing style.
Class is kind of central to Normal People, as well as the rural/urban divide.
I feel like I didn't articulate myself well before. I like reading about class and classism, but I struggle to connect with books where the main characters are all middle class and it's framed as the default with little acknowledgement that they are middle class.
I meant that in a positive way, in that Normal People might work for you because she doesn’t just work with the default middle class. She acknowledges the class differences between the main characters both in their hometown and when they move to Dublin.
Noted, it's now on my list (as is the series).
Normal People is a great book (but the show is better tbh!) Anyway -
Conversations w/ Friends = Pure Heroine
Normal People = Melodrama
BW, WAY = Solar Power
- for any budding Roon-atics. You know what to skip…
I guess I know what my Roon-introduction will be!
…just the middle three chapters of Beautiful World?
I just finished A Natural by Ross Raisin and wondering if anyone else has read it? I have a question about the plot that I can’t find discussion about online and it’s doing my head in.
Overall I found it a bit hit and miss. I prefer a bit more of a poetic style to this novel’s v natural one, but I did get pulled along for the ride after the first 100 pages.
Bewilderment has absolutely pulled me in.
Update: I finished it. Fucking hell.
Bitch, that wasn’t even 24h??????
I just finished the main Foundation trilogy and Asimov is that girl I didn’t know she was! The plot-twists at every turn of the page, I-
But time to leave the sci-fi aside for a bit (mainly because the TV show is so different I’m in no hurry anymore ññ). Prize reading time!
I just finished The Island of Missing Trees by Elif Shafak and it's easily my book of the year so far. Closest I've ever come to crying at the end of a novel.
That new Knausgaard book is getting absolutely savaged. Sam Byers did not hold back in his review for The Guardian.
Currently reading The Mermaid by Christina Henry. Instead of a lousy Little Mermaid retelling (there seem to be heaps of books on that subject on this past decade), it is a "what if" if famous nineteenth-century circus/curiosities museum owner P.T. Barnum had caught a real mermaid instead of the mummified-monkey-sewn-to-a-fish-tail thing he actually used to exhibit.
So far I'm halfway through it and I like its slow pace, and that it changes the POV between the 3 main characters (Barnum, his aide, and the mermaid). Also, it has a pretty cool cover art.
Separate names with a comma.