Highly Over Rated

My goal is to read a book every week. In the past ten years I have not yet been able to accomplish the feat. This tear I might get to 42 books read, but perhaps could have made it to 50 if not for books like the latest one. I also have a goal to read books by authors whom are highly touted as being great, but whom I have never bothered to read. My latest read is The Sound and the Fury by one WIlliam Faulkner, who is proclaimed to be one of the greatest novelists of our time. Bull shit I say. I was over a hundred pages into the story, if you could call it that, before I began to pick up any semblance of a plot and dialog that I could understand. The best I can cipher is that this story takes place in Mississippi during the depression years and tries to chronicle life on a farm next to a golf course. The farm is staffed by ex-slaves or descendants of slaves. The language is at best an attempt to mimic the language of people who never really learned English from any one other than a slave. Faulkner does do a fairly good job of writing dialog between uneducated blacks in the nineteen twenties. In order for me to understand what I was reading I had to sound out the bubonic words in my head, and then try to translate the sound into english grammar. A book that should have taken me two days to read took seven. Add to that time some procrastination, since I wasn’t anxious to move ahead.

About eighty pages from the end, Faulkner begins writing about adults who at the beginning were toddlers speaking baby talk eubonics. The story began to read like a real story, but then it got all dicey and screwed up at the end and my conclusion is that he must have fallen off his chair drunk before he could finish it properly.

My view on this book is this: If you see William Faulkner on your child’s reading list give the child license to ignore it. I don’t think that will happen because of one word used throughout the story, nigger. It won’t pass censorship by the politically correct police in high schools. It is however, recommended by the Oprah Book Club.

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