NaNoReMo - Augie March

Defective Yeti has had a lovely idea. Since schedules do not currently have enough wiggle room to do NaNoWriMo (National Novel Writing Month) (Heck, they don’t even have enough time to get the mandatory stuff done!), he is sponsoring NaNoReMo (National Novel Reading Month). He posted a list of literature from Huckleberry Finn to Lolita and back again, and asked his readers to vote on which novel they’d like to read. The winner was Catch-22… which kinda sucks, because I just read it (or listened to an unabridged recording on tape, anyway) earlier in 2007 (maybe late 2006, I can’t rightly recall). So, I decided to pick a different book off of his list. Since I’d never heard of it, and since it’s over 500 pages long (long enough to take some time), I’ve decided on Saul Bellow’s The Adventures of Augie March. This appears to be one of those pop-culturally second-tier (but critically first tier) books that appears on a decent selection of “books you should have read by now, you borderline illiterate!” lists, but doesn’t seem to have caught the public eye the way Lolita or Catch-22 has. It is also (new word alert) a picaresque:

a popular subgenre of prose fiction which is usually satirical and depicts in
realistic and often humorous detail the adventures of a roguish hero of low
social class who lives by his or her wits in a corrupt society
Thanks, Wikipedia! Anyway, I’ll be blogging my thoughts on the novel as I read (beginning November 1st). So as not to bog the blog with posts about the novel, I’ll be adding my thoughts as comments on this post. If you’re familiar with the book, or are also reading along, feel free to add your own comments here (no, I’m really not expecting this, though it would be cool. This is essentially about me trying to track my reactions to a critically recognized book as I read it. It’ll be interesting for me, if not for all of you!)

PS: They're getting $16 for a paperback of this book - unbelievable! I picked up a used copy for $6 at half-price books. Much more reasonable!


Shell said...

Howdy y'all. Don't know if you have read this book but I just finished A Prayer for Owen Meany by John Irving. My girls read it in high school and I came across it while packing. Was a good read. Maybe I'll read Catch 22. I think I read it before but with my memory I'm sure I have forgotten it. I have also read 30 Seconds Over Tokyo (can't remember author) and The Cuban Missile Crisis by Robert Kennedy.


Viola Zuppa said...

I think you should make a new post as you read and do NaBloPoMo as well (National Blog Posting Month)!

I may still join you on this literary journey.