Friday, September 18, 2009

Whitehead Revisited

So, a while back I got into a little online exchange with the author of Sag Harbor, Colson Whitehead.  I wanted to give him the benefit of the doubt so I bought the book, gave him my hard earned money, and sat down to read it. I made it about a chapter and a half. 

Fast forward to the day I received a syllabus that listed John Henry Days, another Whitehead book, as required reading. I thought to my self, "Self, give him another shot." I reread the first chapter and a half of Sag Harbor and actually made it all the way through the third. Progress!

But I felt no desire to keep reading. Strange, because I really wanted to have a well formed opinion about this book.

Of course, now it's clear, that this was my opinion. Is my opinion. Neither the protagonist nor the writing is compelling enough to even invest the few hours it would take to complete the book. Ouch.

John Henry Days, however, is a marvelous book. 4 Scoops for sure. It weaves together structure, content, and theme masterfully; all three components truly support and enhance each other. 

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