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  • Jane Harrison
    Hi: Out of curiosity, has anyone on the list read the Gormenghast trilogy. I am about to embark on this great task and thought I might get some feedback.
    Message 1 of 3 , Sep 14, 2000
      Hi:

      Out of curiosity, has anyone on the list read the Gormenghast trilogy. I am
      about to embark on this great task and thought
      I might get some feedback.

      Thanks,

      Jane

      P.S. The posts on Lewis were nice. How come David was not portrayed in the
      movie, Shadowlands and only Douglas.
    • LSolarion@aol.com
      In a message dated 09/14/2000 9:14:06 AM Pacific Daylight Time, jharrison3@mindspring.com writes:
      Message 2 of 3 , Sep 21, 2000
        In a message dated 09/14/2000 9:14:06 AM Pacific Daylight Time,
        jharrison3@... writes:

        <<
        Out of curiosity, has anyone on the list read the Gormenghast trilogy. I am
        about to embark on this great task and thought
        I might get some feedback. >>

        Hi, Jane. I'm a bit late getting to my mail, so you've probably got some
        feedback already, but here's my two cents anyway:
        Gormenghast is a magnificent, though somewhat claustrophobic, masterpiece.
        Its prose style rivals Dunsany and Eddison in its lushness, though free of
        their archaicisms, and the variety and quirkiness of its invention are a
        marvel. You will meet some of the oddest characters in all literature.
        It is not, however, a happy there-and-back-again adventure in which the
        heroes fulfill their quest and return to get their rewards from the
        gamemaster. It begins darkly and gets darker. Nevertheless, it is well worth
        the trip.
        I found that the third volume, Titus Alone, much inferior to the first two.
        Peake was dying as he finished it, and his powers diminished toward the end.
        My personal opinion is that the "trilogy" works better without it.
        I presume you have started it, and may already have finished it by this time.
        If not, you have a special experience awaiting you. Enjoy!
        Steve
      • David S. Bratman
        - we now return you to our regular programming - ... Titus Alone is a much misunderstood book. Peake s mental powers were indeed failing as he finished it (he
        Message 3 of 3 , Sep 21, 2000
          - we now return you to our regular programming -

          On Thu, 21 Sep 2000 LSolarion@... wrote:

          > I found that the third volume, Titus Alone, much inferior to the first two.
          > Peake was dying as he finished it, and his powers diminished toward the end.
          > My personal opinion is that the "trilogy" works better without it.

          Titus Alone is a much misunderstood book. Peake's mental powers were
          indeed failing as he finished it (he wasn't physically dying for a long
          time to come, which was part of his tragedy), but this only affects the
          sketchiness of the latter part of the book, a sketchiness partially
          repaired in the restored text published by Overlook.

          What upsets most Gormenghast-lovers about Titus Alone cannot be wished
          away on the author's illness. Peake knew what he was doing when he
          conceived this book. It's not a Gormenghast book: it's about what
          happens to Titus after he leaves Gormenghast. Titus is bewildered and
          generally out of his element; and so, if the book works, is the reader.

          It is not the last of a trilogy. Peake intended to write further books
          aobut Titus, and I believe some fragments have been published. The term
          "Gormenghast trilogy" is thus incorrect in both words. If you just want
          Gormenghast, then just read the first two books: that's what the BBC did,
          and they rightly entitled their series "Gormenghast". But if you want
          Titus, or if you want to understand the context that Peake wanted you to
          see Gormenghast in, then read Titus Alone.

          David Bratman
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