creative [kree-ey-tiv]: adjective. Synonyms: clever, cool, innovative, inspired, prolific, stimulating.

criticism [krit-uh-siz-uhm]: noun. The act of passing judgment as to the merits of anything.

26 Apr 2010

The Origin of Species - Nino Ricci

There's a booby on the cover!
But really, that's not what first prompted me to read it; apparently, this 472-page thick brick by Nino Ricci won the Governor General's Literary Award for Fiction. It sounded promising. Please do notice the past tense.
This book took me more than a month to read - granted, I was reading other things at the same time, but still. Its thick, murky prose is not exactly "light" reading, and you should avoid this brick at all costs if you do not want to read about:
- A thirty-something guy
- An anglo, who lives and works and studies in Montreal during the 80's (just after the Chernobyl meltdown)
- Who has a son in Sweden (but only heard about it for the first time when said son turned five)
- Who should stop angsting about his Ph.D thesis and start writing it already
- Who is spineless
- Who is just about one of the worst "romantic interests" anyone could ever have (boyfriend rape, anyone?)
All this is delivered in rambling, unending paragraphs. Really, the most interesting part of this character-driven novel are the internal conversations the main character has with an imaginary interviewer; they highlight the self-centeredness and the desire for attention that is, apparently, pretty common to most of the human race.
Apart from that, I found this novel boring, too long mostly. I don't usually like character-centric stories, since they tend to make the character in question intensely unlikable, and this novel is no exception. Even if there's a booby on the cover.

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