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Paul Auster ...

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Well, I bought The Brooklyn Follies and have been anticipating reading it for some time now, but here I am about half way through it and I've decided that he isn't the writer I thought he was. Darn. It's still a compelling story, and I will finish the book, but he probably should have let an editor have free rein with this one before he ever let it out of his hands.

 

Let this be a lesson to us all.

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I still have his New York Trilogy in my stack(s). Hope springs eternal. :D

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Well, I bought The Brooklyn Follies and have been anticipating reading it for some time now, but here I am about half way through it and I've decided that he isn't the writer I thought he was. Darn.

Hi Still,

Glad to hear your voice; sorry to hear about Auster's writing. Drat.

I means I too shall be moving New York Trilogy a little lower in my stack. Maybe down below Moviegoer. Gotta keep that stack organised. :D

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Actually, I picked up The New York Trilogy this afternoon, and so far I am enjoying it, but I spent too long reading The Devil Wears Prada, and wish I could have that time back to devote to Trilogy. :D The main character is very complex.

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I read Oracle Nights a while back. It's a very, very interesting read. But somehow, it wasn't quite right for me. I'm not sure I'll go back to Auster, because the style felt, well, detached maybe, or something like that. So I guess I'm like Still here. The story's good, the writing is good, but there#'s something slightly awry.

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Even though I ended up enjoying at least the first in the Trilogy, I am not 100% sure I will read more of Auster. I think the most likely candidate is the one...I think something about Illusions...don't have the name in front of me.

He is a twisty sort of author, and one probably has to be "in the mood" for him.

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but there#'s something slightly awry.

Oh boy, Andy!

That "something slightly awry" really gets my curiosity up!

To the point where I am absolutely going to have to read the story now!

I cannot possibly let a recommendation like that go by!

Seriously! :dunno:

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No. You don't need to read it. There's something just slightly frustratingly annoying about the book. Something not quite there to make it enjoyable. I'm not sure if it's the prose, or the detachment, or the ever annoying "protagonist is an author" stuff, or what. But it's definitely not a recommendation.

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No. You don't need to read it. There's something just slightly frustratingly annoying about the book. Something not quite there to make it enjoyable. I'm not sure if it's the prose, or the detachment, or the ever annoying "protagonist is an author" stuff, or what. But it's definitely not a recommendation.

Andy,

I was tongue-in-cheek about your post being a recommendation. I recognize that you are unhappy with the book but I was intrigued by your reason that there is something vaguely wrong with it, or "slightly frustratingly annoying about it." I have bought the book because, apart from that subliminal and nagging reason, the book sounds interesting enough and I am curious to see how that reason shows itself. Perhaps I will agree with you eventually. Or, perhaps I will say the book is worse than you say, and that you were being generous. For the moment however, after only 60 pages, I have to say I am definitely interested in the story and how it will all turn out, and also definitely interested in the author's unusual way of telling it. Perhaps things will get worse, but I definitely have no quarrel with your post. And I recognize that, perversely, I am reading the book against your advice, partly to satisfy a curiosity. It sounds to me like an unusual book and I tend to seek out 'unusual.'

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Well having read still only the first of the trilogy, I have indulged in buying The Book of Illusions. So will report back when read. :dunno:

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Andy,... Perhaps I will agree with you eventually. Or, perhaps I will say the book is worse than you say, and that you were being generous. For the moment however, after only 60 pages, I have to say I am definitely interested in the story and how it will all turn out, and also definitely interested in the author's unusual way of telling it. Perhaps things will get worse,....

 

Well, Andy,

The results are in.

In my opinion Oracle Night did go downhill, and you definitely were being generous.The initially interesting structure of a narrator-author writing a story about an editor reading a story, who also had a friend who was an author and perhaps writing a story, and the potentially interlocked story lines that might be implied by this structure of stories within stories, just all petered out into insignificant endings that finally didn't seem to me to be worth the effort of reading. There were several definitely very interesting episodes and events that occurred in the few days of the author's life that were covered by the overall story, but finally they just seemed to get lost in long stretches of boring historical narrative, to never again come together for dramatic impact within the overall story itself. The only way I can try to describe the overall effect on me is to say that Auster seemed to spend more time "explaining" his story, rather than simply "telling" it in an interesting manner. So, he moves further down in my stack.

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I think that probably backs up my opinion. There's enough in there to have made it into an interesting book, but the narrative is just completely flat, I think. The whole book should have fizzed, but was flat. My ongoing hatred for books about authors, and books, and poets remains thoroughly in place, with the exception of At-Swim-Two-Birds.

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....There's enough in there to have made it into an interesting book, but the narrative is just completely flat...

Agree 100%.

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