Having given it an acceptable – yet not excessive – amount of thought, I have decided to jump-start my blog with a festive post on some recent readings (hurray indeed!). I’d be lying if I said I had a very specific, well-thought plan for this blog. Like any lazy writer, I’m mostly hoping it will soon develop a life of its own, or some other similar cliché. Either way, in a very appropriate manner, it begins… with a book.
Well, two of them.
The first is Jonathan Franzen’s long-awaited Freedom. Though I am usually not one for all this Americana (college basketball, suburbia, green-vs.-corporate politics), I found myself enjoying it very much. Which is perhaps not much of a surprise – I loved The Corrections – but mostly, I think, it goes to show that well-built characters and relationships can survive any setting. What was extra clever about Freedom, and only revealed towards the end, was that it is in a sense a book about a book (well, manuscript). Despite everything Walter B. was put through by his horrific wife, he stayed put; what finally broke him down and forced him to regain control was Patty’s manuscript. Oh, the ars-poetica of it all. Sometimes the situation needs to be put into words for us to fully accept and understand it (more on this later. Probably).
I was also going to say something about His Loveliness, Stephen Fry’s (latest) autobiography, The Fry Chronicles. Then I realized I don’t really have anything to say about it. What is there to say? Some people are born with the right words, some achieve them and some have those words thrust upon them; Stephen Fry seems to be all and none at the same time. He has all the right anecdotes and all the wit to make daily events into anecdotes too, which is way more useful. Mr. Fry, I adore you! There, I said it.