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maryque.com/blog/2008-2015 - Kesken

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Kesken 
En muista kuin muutaman kirjan viimeisen vuoden ajalta, jotka olen joutunut jättämään kesken. Ensimmäinen oli John Updiken Autokauppiaan unelmat, toinen Nick Hornbyn Poika ja nyt tänään kolmas; Jonathan Franzenin Freedom (suom. Vapaus). Hornby oli muistaakseni niin ärsyttävällä tavalla feikki ("Mitä tapahtuu kun lapsellinen tyhjäntoimittaja ja pikkuvanha kaksitoistavuotias ystävystyvät?"), täydellisesti keski-ikäisille (~50v.) naisille räätälöity paska kirja, että en kestänyt enää sen teennäistä tekstiä. Avataanpa kirja siitä kohdasta mihin kirjamerkki (N:n vaatekauppakuitti viime kesältä Helsingistä) on jäänyt:
"Will muisti jokaisen yksityiskohdan jonka Rachel oli ensimmäisenä iltana paljastanut. Hän tiesi Rachelin kuvittamien kirjojen nimet, tosin ensimmäisen teoksen nimestä hän ei ollut aivan varma oliko se The Way to the Woods vai The Way Through the Woods - se piti tarkistaa - ja entisen miehen nimen, asuinpaikan ja ammatin ja.. Alin nimeä hän ei olisi voinut kuvitellakaan unohtavansa. Se oli yksi perusfaktoista. Sehän olisi ollut samaa kuin unohtaisi, milloin Englanti voitti jalkapallossa maailmanmestaruuden tai mikä oli Luke Skywalkerin oikean isän nimi - niin ei yksinkertaisesti voinut käydä vaikka kuinka olisi yrittänyt."

Niinpä.

Autokauppiaan unelmat
& Vapaus kertovat kumpikin sietämättömän normaalia tarinaa rikkoutuvasta tai rikkoutuneesta keskiluokkaisesta amerikkalaisesta perheestä, jonka ainoaankaan jäseneen ei lukijalla synny minkäänlaista suhdetta. Olen antanut kummallekin kirjalle selkeät mahdollisuudet: olen lukenut kumpaakin vähintaan 400 sivua. Usein kirjan keskivaihe on kaikkein tylsin, mutta kun on päässyt 2/3 matkasta, tapahtuu yleensä jotain joka saa kiinnostumaan lopputarinasta. Ei näissä tapauksissa. Tähän voi lisätä vielä sen äärettömän kummallisen bestsellerin ominaisuuden että kummassakaan kirjassa ei ole tippaakaan huumoria. Ei ainuttakaan kohtaa joka saisi nauramaan.

En kuitenkaan ole yksin: ylistetty ("The novel of the year and the century." –The Guardian) Vapaus jakaa mielipiteitä myös Amazonissa, samaistuin erityisesti tähän arvosteluun:
"I am completely bewildered by the glowing reviews "best novel in 30 years", etc. etc. What have these people been reading? The characters in this book are a shallow bunch of very unlikeable people -- there wasn't one I cared about even a tiny bit. And what was funny? I can't remember laughing out loud at anything in the book. The one thing that did make me laugh out loud was from someone who said that 300 pages into the book he really wanted to "leave it on the bus."

Allekirjoitan ylläolevasta kaiken. Joten jos haluatte luettavaa, minulla on muutama kirja joista voin – ei, haluan – luopua postikulujen hinnalla.

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