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RE: [johnbarth] Apologies, Touts

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  • Lone Wolf & Cub
    Yeah, I m with you all the way on Midnight s Children in particular, but I ve read all of his books, even the early SF one, Grimus. I think the only one I
    Message 1 of 2 , May 9, 2003
      Yeah, I'm with you all the way on Midnight's Children in particular, but
      I've read all of his books, even the early SF one, Grimus. I think the
      only one I disliked was the rock one, The Ground Beneath Her Feet, which
      I was put off in advance by the Bono connection, and then it turned out
      that Bono was all over the book too, and it's full of this really narrow
      and dated view of music where nothing that has happened in the last few
      decades, apart from Bono of course, are worth a damn. I recommend Shame
      and The Moor's Last Sigh
      - Martin Skidmore

      -----Original Message-----
      From: Kris Majer [mailto:kmajer@...]
      Sent: 09 May 2003 21:34
      To: johnbarth@yahoogroups.com
      Subject: [johnbarth] Apologies, Touts

      Hi again,

      So let me first apologize for walking out on the On With the Story read.
      I was more or less responsible for the sign-ups, I think, and it was
      generally a very difficult moment to eke out time for anything. We had
      managed to conduct two very fruitful and (in my opinion at least) very
      pleasant group-reads before, so maybe we will pull it off once again one
      day? Maybe during the summer? I promise to supervise the sign-ups and to
      see it through to the end this time - not before July though, until then
      I'm grounded with the thesis... So much for apologies (and a bit of a
      promise, too, I guess). On to Touts!

      I know there are Rushdie fans here on board, I remember Blair mentioning
      Fury (though unfavourably, am I right? in comparison to his other
      works). Fury I haven't read, but about two years ago I read The Satanic
      Verses, and was very much taken with it. After the two colossal Barths
      which saw me through January, February and March, and after having
      lingered on the American soil for some time now, I decided to switch
      continents and bought Midnight's Children.

      An incredible book! I strongly recommend the Barthfolk to seek it out if
      they haven't already; made me think of Our Man very very often. Nightly
      male-to-female storytelling, the number 1001 popping up all over the
      place, obsession with history and correspondences, ontogeny
      recapitulates philogeny ('parallels' would perhaps be a better word in
      this case), an impossibly self-conscious narrator with his irresistible,
      hilarious narration - full of flash-forwards, digressions, twists and
      turns... There's a touch of Pynchon here and there, too, in the zany
      characters that people the novel. I literally enjoyed every bit of it.
      Most highly recommended. Will anyone back me up here?

      I'll leave you to savour the opening lines...

      "I was born in the city of Bombay... once upon a time. No, that won't
      do, there's no getting away from the date: I was born in Doctor
      Narlikar's Nursing Home on August 15th, 1947. And the time? The time
      matters, too. Well
      then: at night. No, it's important to be more... On the stroke of
      midnight, as a matter of fact. Clock-hands joined palms in respectful
      greeting as I came. Oh, spell it out, spell it out: at the precise
      instant of India's arrival at independence, I tumbled forth into the


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