Monday, May 25, 2009

2666 as a Book Club Pick?

In the Telegraph, Genevieve Fox writes a humorous account of the fallout when her book club decided to read Roberto Bolano's 977-page 2666. The group reconvened after finishing the first 350 pages (through the third section of the novel's five sections) and discussed whether to continue.

Much anger was expressed, with one participant asking: ‘‘What is the point of this book? ... It seems entirely without form. Or plot. Or characters you can believe in or sympathise with.” Another concluded, ‘‘It’s just a platform for BolaƱo’s ego.’’ The consensus: 2666 is nothing more than "an elaborate joke with no promise of a punch line." Nevertheless, the group voted to read to the end. I hope Fox let's us know how the next meeting goes.

1 comment:

Steph said...

This is great, given that I'm hosting a read-along of this massive beast over the next few months (the aim being to read one section per month). I will say, having finished part one, that I've been pleasantly surprised with the book - I expected to really dislike it, and I haven't, BUT that being said, I certainly see where the book club members are coming from. I think certain elements of the book are meant to be cheeky, but sometimes you wonder if humor is enough to carry certain distasteful themes.