Marathon reading session...

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Marathon reading session...

Post by NaClmine on Tue Feb 24, 2009 3:45 am

Let's see, in the past three weeks I read The Sun Also Rises by Hemingway, and the following list by Louis L'Amour:

The Quick and the Dead (excellent!)
The Man From Broken Hills (fair)
Reilly's Luck (very good)
Trailing West (fair)
Last of the Breed (boring)
The Man Called Noon (excellent)

Louis L'Amour was the most prolific writer of old west stories set in the U.S. His stories are easy reading, fast paced with simple plots . . . usually man versus man with a touch of man versus nature sprinkled in to complicate the main storyline. My next review will compare and contrast all six of his books listed above. (in another post, at another time)

Now, for Hemingway . . .

I've read most of Hemingway's other works and The Sun Also Rises was a huge disappointment. Robert Cohn is a wealthy writer who is bored with life. After many chapters of dull activity in Paris, Cohn and his friend, Jake, (also the POV for the story . . . much of which, is written in first person) travel to Spain to experience the bullfights. The story is filled with the most monotonous dialog I have ever read. Using several soap-opera quality characters, the storyline features drinking, flirting, drinking and...yes...more drinking. Hemingway's main character describes scenes throughout Paris and in several cities in Spain, principally Madrid in great detail. His descriptions of Spanish bull fighting are particularly thorough by do little to recover the otherwise painfully sluggish story.

At first, I wondered how this book ever received literary respect. Then I realized it was released in a time when there was no television, few travel magazines and no easy long distance travel to vacation places such as we have in today's airlines. The US was in the middle of the era of Prohibition. I guess a story featuring heavy drinking, carousing and vivid descriptions of France, Spain and bullfighting might have been very interesting to people living under those circumstances. In today's world, I found it a terrible read. In addition, Hemingway has an annoying habit of writing run-on sentences, some of which span a dozen lines in a single paragraph.
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Re: Marathon reading session...

Post by Garmar on Tue Feb 24, 2009 1:44 pm

That's quite a lot of reading! I haven't read much lately. Other than stuff online.

Unfortunately my reading has been put on the back-burner. Got to remedy that.

I'll definitely stay away from that Hemingway novel. Don't have time for books that suck. I can't remember the name, but I read one of his about a safari. I think the MC gets a severe tooth infection, or something like that. It was pretty good.

I don't believe I've ever read Louis L' Amour. I'll read those suggested.

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Re: Marathon reading session...

Post by Red_Venus on Tue Feb 24, 2009 4:46 pm

Louis L'Amour rocks! I've read "The Shadow Riders" and "The Sacketts" (both of which were made into movies). The books were better than the movies in my opinion, but I usually prefer a book to the movie version.

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Re: Marathon reading session...

Post by NaClmine on Wed Feb 25, 2009 12:32 pm

When I have time next weekend, I'll do the compare and contrast on the six L'Amour books I read. There was one that is in the "must read" category and another in the "must avoid" column. The rest were enjoyable, but I'll cover the details later.
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Re: Marathon reading session...

Post by Red_Venus on Wed Feb 25, 2009 1:26 pm

Cool!
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Re: Marathon reading session...

Post by Guest on Mon Jun 15, 2009 10:49 am

NaClmine
Have you ever read Zane Grey? An early competitor / predecessor of Lamour. Very good (and very overdone) descriptions, but he puts you in the Wild West so well you can smell the gun smoke and horse manure. I haven't read a good western since 'Shane', and that was a long time ago.
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