Slaughterhouse-Five by Kurt Vonnegut Jr (1969)

Putting my pants on back to front this morning made me think of this madly sane and funny anti-war book. 

Preface. Those things sticking up in the air are my hands. I don’t pretend to follow some of what goes on with the intergalactic hero Billy Pilgrim. I’ve always thought of his journeys as blameless, get-away-from-it-all escapes into his head. (For me, that would be too echoey.)

Vonnegut uses three main pulses throughout. Given their make-up, they’re tricky to carry off with panache. Especially in a book that’s frightening one moment, funny the next, and freaky the one after. But the pulses give us emphatic beats in which to absorb the message, pause for thought.

So, let’s touch on those. Oh, and also want to share some flair in describing a sexy lady. Hell, why not.

Continue reading Slaughterhouse-Five by Kurt Vonnegut Jr (1969)

Brideshead Revisited by Evelyn Waugh (1945)

Hello.

Someone somewhere told me once that Waugh wrote Brideshead Revisited in an eye-rubbingly improbable couple of months or so. It takes me that long to still not get around to cleaning my bathroom.

Couple of delightful morsels for us. Batty thoughts and some diamond dialogue.

Continue reading Brideshead Revisited by Evelyn Waugh (1945)

Anna Karenina by Leo Tolstoy (1878)

Hello.

Most top ten lists of bloody brilliant novels have Tolstoy’s Anna Karenina in them.

Leaving aside the oft-discussed and compelling story of betrayal, hanky-chewing, faith, nail-gnawing, marriage and related hand-wringing unravellings, here a couple of slices of Tolstoy style to savour. Nom nom.

Lessons from Leo – repetition

Continue reading Anna Karenina by Leo Tolstoy (1878)

The Great Gatsby by F. Scott Fitzgerald (1926)

I’ve read this several times. Gets me every time.

Dang, the man could write. No mean feat, given his marshmallows were well toasted most of the time.

To give a sound a colour without blinking like the ‘orchestra… playing yellow cocktail music’ is pretty, pretty cool. And he’s right – it is yellow. I can hear it drifting across the lawn down to the water’s edge. Eat your heart out, Kandinsky.

Can you smell the talc in this?

Continue reading The Great Gatsby by F. Scott Fitzgerald (1926)

Eating Animals by Jonathan Safran Foer (2009)

Hello. Thanks for dropping by. My first blog post – yikes.

I love reading. And I love to clock notable style as I come across it.

Maybe you’re a kindred soul who does the same or similar? If so, let’s kick over our bar stools and have some fun.

Continue reading Eating Animals by Jonathan Safran Foer (2009)