This is by Pico Iyer, courtesy of "The Passive Voice" and offered here merely for consideration that writing comes in many forms and with many aims:



"No writer can compete, for speed and urgency, with texts or CNN news flashes or RSS feeds, but any writer can try to give us the depth, the nuances — the “gaps,” as Annie Dillard calls them — that don’t show up on many screens. Not everyone wants to be reduced to a sound bite or a bumper sticker.

Enter (I hope) the long sentence: the collection of clauses that is so many-chambered and lavish and abundant in tones and suggestions, that has so much room for near-contradiction and ambiguity and those places in memory or imagination that can’t be simplified, or put into easy words, that it allows the reader to keep many things in her head and heart at the same time, and to descend, as by a spiral staircase, deeper into herself and those things that won’t be squeezed into an either/or. With each clause, we’re taken further and further from trite conclusions — or that at least is the hope — and away from reductionism, as if the writer were a dentist, saying “Open wider” so that he can probe the tender, neglected spaces in the reader (though in this case it’s not the mouth that he’s attending to but the mind)."

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I get the "snappy".  However, in the meantime (a long meantime) we have learned to relate to P.I.s  who don't care about what clothes they wear, embracing the natural look instead.  They are, in fact, rough and tumble, and that becomes a part of their character and establishes priorities that don't rely on appearance.  I'm not so sure that 1939 was really so much into men wearing powder-blue suits and ogling ornate residences.

I see absolutely no reason for the hype there.

Hype. Like the Pulitzer and the National Book Award? I need to get the name of his publicist. :)

Doesn't change the fact that it didn't do anything for me.

Just to make sure we have the same book/author in mind:  this was the one about a father and son wandering about the destroyed planet?

That was The Road. Not my favorite of his, but it did win him the Pulitzer. I really loved No Country for Old Men. The book and the film adaptation.

Ah.  Thanks.  Didn't read NO COUNTRY.  Hated the other one.  :)


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