Book Review, Drama, Fiction, Herman Melville, J.D. Salinger, John Irving, Literature, Orson Scott Card, Virginia Woolf

Reviews: The Earlies, Part 6

To the Lighthouse by Virginia Woolf

My first Woolf novel, and I’m a bit disappointed. The language is too flower, the characters undeveloped. It seems Woolf attempts to evoke feelings from her readers without providing the necessary information – she glazes over deaths and wars as if they’re quite inconsequential. The prose is confusingly liquid – dialogue and narration are often indistinguishable. I’m not sorry I read it, but I think it will be quite a long time before I pick up another Woolf novel, especially if this is the one which was supposed to have “defined Woolf as a major novelist.”

The World According to Garp by John Irving

Absolutely wonderful as far as meta-fiction goes. Brilliant in the structure and style. I was personally put off by the seemingly overly-sexual interest the father has with his youngest son, and by the rape and adultery scenes. Also, the rapid succession of deaths are a little hard to believe but maybe that’s the point? All in all, I would recommend it to those who like creative story-telling and who may have fantasies of writing their own novel one day.

Franny and Zooey by J.D. Salinger

Beautiful book. Reminded me why I love Salinger. This will probably be one of few books which I read multiple times.

Songmaster by Orson Scott Card

Not my favorite of Card’s works, but that’s not exactly dismissive, considering Orson Scott Card is a Fantastic writer. I did enjoy this book, and it was a quick read… very creative and different (in a good way). It was also nice to see some homosexuality in a sci-fi book, though it wasn’t really portrayed in the best light. Overall, though.. I’m glad I read it.

The Confidence-Man by Herman Melville

This is probably Melville’s best work – and one of the best to come out of the American “renaissance” era, though it was dismissed at first, and for a long while, most likely due to the fact that no one understood what was going on (a problem which seems to still inhibit readings of this book). The novel is incredible – rife with Biblical, classical, historical, political, and social allusions. The story is, indeed, quite complicated and difficult to follow or figure out, but the message is worth the effort. The devil is in the details.

Equus by Peter Shaffer

Fascinating. Wild. Intriguing. Disturbing. Just wonderful.

Standard
Agatha Christie, Autobiography, Classics, Coming-of-Age, Dave Pelzer, Herman Melville, J.D. Salinger, J.K. Rowling, John Steinbeck, John Walsh, Literature, Murder Myster, William Golding

Reviews: The Earlies, Part 18

A Child Called It by Dave Pelzer 4.0/5.0

Amazing book. Sad, disturbing, heart-breaking, and maddening.

Tears of Rage by John Walsh 4.0/5.0

Incredibly sad story (true story) about a child’s kidnap and murder. Tear-jerking and intense. Very good book.

Lord of the Flies by William Golding 4.5/5.0

So awesome. (I warned you that some of these reviews were simplistic! I must have been in my “minimalist” period.)

The Catcher in the Rye by J.D. Salinger 5.0/5.0

Best book ever. Well, maybe not, but it’s certainly a favorite of mine.

And Then There Were None by Agatha Christie 4.5/5.0

I read this book in seventh grade, and it is what first got me interested in reading for fun. Until that point, I had only picked up the stray Goosebumps or Choose Your Own Adventure book. I’ve read this book three times and will probably read it again.

Moby Dick by Herman Melville 4.0/5.0

Stunning. One of the most – no, the most elaborately detailed book I have ever read. Not the most exciting plot, not the easiest language, not too many exciting sub-layers to the story. But definitely, positively one of the best books ever written. It took me 7 months to get through (and I’m an insanely fast reader) but it was well worth it.

The Pearl by John Steinbeck 4.0/5.0

Beautiful story about the evils of wealth and greed.

Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows by J.K. Rowling 5.0/5.0

Amazing finale to an incredible series. Well done, Ms. Rowling. Well done.

Standard