Thursday, November 24, 2011
Book 23-The Sound and the Fury
I did not like this book, it was horribly difficult to read, and in the end left me understanding what I read (to a degree) but not what it meant.
Thank God for Daniel S. Burt's brief description of the book in The Novel 100 because after reading it I realized that I understood more of what was happening than I thought I did, but I still didn't end the book feeling like I learned anything. I wanted to like it after having such a huge epiphany after reading Absalom, Absalom, but try as I might I just can't say that I loved it. Interestingly enough this is one of 6 books on the list of 100 that does not appear on the list of 1001.
I didn't like any of the character's in this novel, and normally that is okay (when they are parts of myself that I can identify and want to work on) but in this case I just didn't like any of the characters they were all crazy and not in a good way!!!
Benjy-who is the special needs adult whose brain you are plummeted into at the beginning of the novel frustrated me (but also gave me compassion for those for whom the world is a confusing place)
Quentin- One of the narrators who appeared in Absalom, absalom is apathetic and unable to face real life
Jason jr- Huge jerk that I hope to never be like in my life. Man, he made me mad, but I was glad he came to at the end of the novel
Caddy- although she was kind to Benjy and took care of him she was also selfish and her choices ended up being the downfall of her family
I suppose Dilsey- the black servant was a fine character who ran the family out of love and compassion. I felt so bad for her as she ran around trying to keep everyone in line. The scene in church where Benjy is silent listening to the preachers story of redemption was beautiful, but still not enough to redeem the novel. Daniel S. Burt talks about this as the alternate option that could have happened for the family, but it wasn't paraticularly clear for me as the reader. I finished the book, and thought to myself... now what was the point of all of that?!
I guess one thing that I did get out of the novel is that you will torture yourself i you live in the past. The quotes that stood out most for me had to do with time and its passage.
"I give you the mausoleum of all hope and desire" ~speaking of the pocket watch Quentin was left by his grandfather
"I give it to you not that you may remember time, but that you might forget it now and then for a moment and not spend all your breath trying to conquer it."
"clocks slay time"
There is an interesting occurence that happens when they change the "man child's" name from Maury to Benjy. I loved the quote "Folks don't have no luck changing names" because I actually think that people do! I have always been a believer in the Biblical process of changing names when your character changes. I hope to name my children for character if I am ever blessed to have them.
Finally here are a few random quotes about various characters that amused me or made me think.
"Women are never virgins. Purity is a negative state and therefore contrary to nature" ~Faulkner seems to have a thing with virginity...
"You're not a gentleman,' Spoade said. 'No I'm Canadian,' Shreve said. Lol!!!! As a Canadian that made me laugh!
A quote about Caddy shall end off this review and than I can finally leave this book to rest. Thank god! "It was to isolate her out of the loud world".
Onwards to Book 24 which is Vanity Fair. Kind of excited to read this one!