Saved by the Language

So after reading this post I remembered how every reminder (vague or specific) of the Arthurian stories makes me less interested in reading them.

I had three books from this lay on my shelf, and I picked up the first to briefly peruse before setting it on the “leaving” shelf in the garage.  Here’s what I read:

Some people there are who, being grown, forget the horrible task of learning to read.  It is perhaps the greatest single effort that the human spirit undertakes, and he must do it as a child.

Those were the first words I’ve ever read of John Steinbeck’s.

I opened to the middle and realized at once why people will spend time in the depression with this man, or listen to a story that they know will end badly.   As much as I despised the tale, even as I was reading it, I knew I could keep reading– and go back to the beginning, even; simply because it was so well written.

It really makes all the difference.   This one is still sitting on my shelf.

This entry was posted in Reading.

2 thoughts on “Saved by the Language

  1. Interesting that you should be reading a blog about that book. I just finished it. And, honestly, it bored me to tears. White was forever going off on tangents. He would describe something and then say something like, “And that really isn’t important except as an illustration of jousting.” Perhaps I’m too spoiled in wanting well written plot, but tangents like that didn’t heighten the story, they detracted from it for me. I honestly do not understand why this book is supposed to be that great.

    I guess there’s always the element of Greek Tragedy that annoys me too. I don’t like the philosophy that we have no control over our destiny. I hate the fact that people can’t make any mistakes in these books without being horribly punished. There is no room for repentance in these stories. It’s all justice and no mercy and that’s not how I see life.

    Oh dear, I’m ranting again.

    Anyway, not a fan of Arthurian legend anyway, and this didn’t help.

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