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"Little, Big" by John Crowley.  This book just made me more and more frustrated the longer I read.  It's an interesting world with lovely writing, but it's populated by 2-dimensional archetypes and no plot.  I doggedly kept reading because (A) the world was cool and (B) something had to happen, sooner or later.  Right?  About 500 pages into it, when I had already suppressed the urge to throw it across the room half a dozen times, one of the "characters" is writing for a soap opera and is thinking about about how interesting the soap opera is as a structure, because it just keeps going on and on and never ends and never comes to any kind of resolution and I thought "if you are actually talking about this book I will KILL YOU DEAD."  Finally, FINALLY, something happened on page 700?  or thereabouts?  and took approximately 30 seconds to read.  And then the book was over.  I set the book down and thought "it took you 700 pages of maundering to get to THAT?  THEY ALL TURN  INTO FAIRIES????  Really??????   Oh, and PS, why did you kill the only character I cared about even a little?   That was unnecessary on so many levels!  You're just trying to make me care about the ending of this awful book!  But it's not going to work!  Your book is still terrible!"    I cannot believe this book won the world fantasy award.  Although, upon reflection, I can believe it.  I'm sure it was the same bunch of yahoos who gave the award to Mythago Wood, which was infuriatingly awful in much the same way.     Oh, John Crowley.  I shan't be reading any more books by you.  Not one more.  And when I get home tonight I'm going to throw out any books of yours that are sitting unread on my shelf. 

Date: 2010-10-26 02:37 pm (UTC)
From: [identity profile] cat9.livejournal.com
Ha! My previously unfair dismissal of this book based on nothing more than an unthinking dislike of the cover design is justified after all! Triumph, of a sort :)

Thanks for doing the hard part for me.

Date: 2010-10-26 03:57 pm (UTC)
From: [identity profile] tamarinne.livejournal.com
If I can save only one person from reading this book... OK, it sounds like you already saved yourself. Well done, you. ;)

Date: 2010-10-26 05:32 pm (UTC)
From: [identity profile] gyzki.livejournal.com
My first reaction was, "Hey, I actually liked Mythago Wood!" Except now that I stop and think about it, I really liked the idea of Mythago Wood, but I kept going "Huh? That's your idea of a mythic imago?" the further into it I got. If it had gone on for 700 pages I probably wouldn't have any fond memory of it at all.

I consider myself warned. Thank you.

Date: 2010-10-26 06:36 pm (UTC)
From: [identity profile] tamarinne.livejournal.com
I wanted to like Mythago Wood so badly that I actually read several books in the series. And hated each one. :) It's been a very long time now since I read it, but my recollection is that it had the same problem of a great premise that was not followed through; with a poorly sketched protagonist and a vestigal plot.


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