BTW, I had a few book reviews lined up but I haven't had enough quality time to finish them up. I finished McCarthy's Child of God (loved it) and now reading Blood Meridian, (enjoying it) both reviews pending. As far as Marlante's Matterhorn, as they say in New Jersey, Forget about it!, I ditched the book for lack of interest in the story line. Seems like the same old thing throughout, can't get through it, however well-written it is, just pressed for time on this epic story. Peeked at the ending and sounds just like the beginning, same note. Love his writing style though, but the story seems predictable from the outset.
That's probably the worst thing for a book. (There's a lesson here.) I love a story that is full of surprises, twists and turns, and keeps you guessing the outcome. What's the point of it all otherwise? Morals, great literary writing, and strong voice alone is not enough! This is the kind of great book that would have mattered more to more people, thirty years ago. Vietnam is hardly relevant, but when presented as in Tim O'Brien's The Things They Carried, it becomes fresh and engaging.
So far I also had to bail out on Jon Clinch's Kings of the Earth. Very disappointing. The opening didn't do it for me and I'm having a tough time getting through any of it, mainly because of the odd structure, but still want to give it a second chance, in hopes that Clinch will finally come through like he did with Finn. I doubt it though. I just don't see this story taking off and since it's based on a true story, that alone diffuses the surprise factor for me. We'll see, so far Blood Meridian is way too interesting (as old as it is, but a timeless classic) to put down. Now there's something women readers will find impossible to believe. I'm sure they couldn't get through the first paragraph. (It's a guy thing, and I'm loving it.)
I'll be away for a week but hope to come back with renewed literary vengeance. Feel free to scour through my files while I'm gone!