from: Zinnia Kray
subj: Past Tense Read

While avoiding touristing:

Subcategory: Gothic Novels

  1. Frankenstein, by Mary Shelley. I read it on the plane to Japan and as a result remember very little of my impression. Being a gothic novel, of course, it had way too much over moralizing and misery.

  2. Melmoth the Wanderer, by Robert Charles Maturin. Oh, the agony of civilized life, ohhh, the AG-ON-Y!!! I am glad the gothic form has evolved since the early 1800s. This book was almost physically painful to read, although not nearly as bad as "Tess of the D'Urbervilles", which took me several months to finish on acount of agonies. Nevertheless, there are many juicy plots and quite a bit of tolerable philosophy.

Subcategory: Boring Existentialism

  1. Magister Ludi, by Hermann Hesse. I liked "Steppenwolf", but this one is just pointless 20th century blather about the nature of scholarship. Oh those fun-loving Germans!

Subcategory: Canadian Literature

  1. The English Patient, by Michael Ondaatje. Eh.

  2. The Shipping News, by E. Annie Proulx. Wanna read a comedy about Newfoundland and a man's "journey of self-discovery" there? This book is actually much better than it sounds.

Subcategory: Miscellaneous

  1. Brave New World by Aldoux Huxley. Much funnier and lighter than I was expecting it to be. An easy, pleasant read.

  2. The Decameron, by Giovanni Boccacio. I would never think in a million years that I'd actually read the whole thing, all 100 stories, but I did, and I actually enjoyed it, particularily the ribald bits.

  3. The Collected Short Stories of Roald Dahl. Yes, written for adults. There are some real classics in here, I highly recommend reading it.