Saturday, November 28, 2015

To Read or Not to Read

"It occurred to her then that life was conical in shape, the past broadening beyond the sharp point of the lived moment.  The more life you had, the more the base expanded, so that the wounds and treasons that were nearly imperceptible when they happened stretched like tiny dots on a balloon slowly blowing up.  A speck on the slender child grows into gross deformity in the adult, inescapable, ragged at the edges."

~ Lauren Groff
Fates and Furies

To be human is to be flawed.  That's why I instantly felt drawn to Lotto and Mathilde, who were more alike than different at the end of the day and equally fractured.  This is not just a story about marriage.  The questions I was left with as I closed the book had to do with character and existence.  Destiny and passion too.

At first I felt like I was reading The Unfortunates again, so similar were the quirky characters and their life dreams.  It made me think of something Elizabeth Gilbert wrote about in Big Magic.  She talked about a novel she wanted to write set in the Amazon the idea for which she never shared with anyone.  In the long stretch of time she cultivated the idea although not to fruition, she met with Ann Patchett who had almost the very same idea.  The idea later became Patchett's acclaimed work State of Wonder.  Gilbert went on to write Eat, Love, Pray, and mused on this not as uncanny coincidence, but rather the life force of the story seeking a host, a teller.  The right teller.  She concedes that ideas have their very own energy, which they plant as inspiration in the heads and hearts of storytellers.  It is, at least, an interesting premise.

The quote above is interesting too.  I think as children it is our innocence that makes us resilient.  As we age and endure and wisen to ourselves, we realize the myriad of ways our scars and wounds shape us.  It is at times overwhelming, but also liberating. 

 Fates and Furies is a good read.  So read it.  

No comments: