* pace

Posted by Lew Weinstein on January 26, 2012

The Bridge of San Luis Rey by Thornton Wilder

  • even though it’s a short novel (117 pages), the story seems to drag, as long narrative scenes regarding Esteban and Uncle Pio are added.
  • What does this all have to do with the collapse of the bridge, and with Brother Juniper, who has totally disappeared from the story?

Anna Karenina by Leo Tolstoy

  • the way Tolstoy begins Anna Karenina communicates immediately that this is not a novel about pace, but will proceed in a leisurely manner to wend its way through the lives and relationships of the many characters.
  • Anna Karenina is widely regarded as the best novel ever written. So I’ve read over 400 pages, with another 400 to go, and I’ve had enough.
  • The story is slow, boring even, with very little happening, and characters that are not gripping.
  • Actually, it’s one long slow soap opera.
  • Tolstoy’s descriptions of places are remarkable. His interior monologues are often revealing, although too frequent and too long for my taste.
  • Bored, I have put Anna Karenina aside to be picked up later NOTE: it’s been four years and I haven’t

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