Sunday, November 19, 2006

122. "This is Not a Novel" ~ David Markson



"Timor mortis conturbat me. The fear of death distresses me.
And what is the use of a book, thought Alice, without pictures or conversations?

There is no such thing as a great movie. A Rembrandt is great. Mozart chamber music. Said Marlon Brando.

Eliot died of emphysema in conjunction with a damaged heart.
Pound died of a blocked intestine."

And so it goes.

Markson returns to the deaths of famous people, all the while throwing in the occasional anecdote or factoid. This is not a novel, in the typical sense. Is it readable? Enjoyable? That depends upon your taste.

It was an engagement in patience, for me. I prefer my stories to have characters (not just "Writer") and plots. When I want to appreciate words, I read poetry. After twenty pages, I began to squirm; after one hundred pages, I was ready to throw down in defeat.

This is not a novel. Perhaps you would appreciate it more than me.

1.0 out of 5.0 Erk and Jerk with Dews.

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