If on a Winter's Night a Traveller (Vintage classics)
13 journalers for this copy...
As I said a very unusual novel but I defy any bibliophile not to identify themselves in Chapter 1 – Calvino was, I feel, one of us. He understood readers and booklovers with a in a way that few other authors appear to have done.
Okay – one line ? I loved this book, I’m not sure that I have ever rated a book at 10 before but I never thought twice about it with 'If on a Winter’s Night a Traveller'.
Released 15 yrs ago (3/12/2005 UTC) at
WILD RELEASE NOTES:
Calvino knows what, and whom, he is talking about. The reader feels understood, no matter what kind of reader he or she may be - all inclinations are accounted for, and somehow put on an equal footing. But the author toys with his audience, taunting and never quite delivering what he seems to offer, only compensating for this apparent cruelty in the last few pages.
In contrast to other readers, I found it a really frustrating read: I didn't like the way the stories never got anywhere, or the way it was so self-reflective and kept foregrounding its own arguments. I know it is an important book, and I know that what Italo Calvino was doing was challenging ideas about author and reader and narrative and fiction, but it turns out I’m just not really interested in going into those issues these days. I’m well aware that realism isn’t without its problems, but I like it. I like a story, and I like characters, and I like to be able to enjoy those things without constantly being reminded that they are nothing but fictions.
I also found it quite difficult, for various reasons, to identify with the character called 'you' or 'the Reader', even though the reader is constantly invited to do so. This probably prevented me from getting stuck in and playing the role the reader needs to play to get the most from this book.
I am glad I've read this book - it's one of those ones that people often say you 'ought to read', and I am pleased that I now know what it's all about. I do think that if you are eager to engage with the questions it opens up, it's very well done indeed and is to be recommended. It just wasn't my thing.
It is a book that warrants sitting down and devoting time to it, which might seem surprising, given that there are so many stories in it, but I think the need to engage, as the Reader, requires singular devotion to the subject.
I felt this novel to be Calvino's huge joke about reading; the way in which we do it and the way we get caught up in the story. I chuckled as I felt myself led up the garden path of another novel to be cut short just as I was getting into the story.
I felt that the plot dragged a little at the University, but that could have been because that was my most fragmented period of reading the book, so that stopped me short of giving a 10.
If it is Ok I will offer this as a ray on the main site.
1. Journal entry on receiving book
2. Journal entry when read book
3. PM next person on list for address
4. Try to read within a month, let me know if your going to be longer.
5. But most of all ENJOY!
I will try to finish it as soon as possible and get it moving again.
Apologies for the delay.
Apologies once again for making such a meal of it, I will be sending this on very soon, honest!!
Sorry it might be a personal foible but someone thinking they know me better than I know myself and actually soo off the mark grates on me.
I think the male Italian ego is better to cope with in person than on the page?
Maybe also it is a cultural thing? I don’t get the humour and I feel as if it is just trying too hard to be clever, or is that part of the whole irony ? Of the pastiche on writing? See I am hopelessly lost Mea culpe maybe one night I will wake with an earth shattering penny drop..I haven’t given up hope ..
I’m glad I tried this though so thanks for the ring.
Having just read some of the previous intelligent discussions..my response might seem a little trite :-) apologies if required.. I'm obviously way behind in my current literary knowledge..but I have responded potentially in the mode of the narrator?how I felt about it at this time, and as I read it.
This was put in post overland to Jubby in Australia yesterday
This arrived in the post today, along with a lovely postcard from Celticseahorse.
Sadly, I do have several bookrings in my possession, but I am hopeful to get to this one soon.
Thank you for sharing this book with me.
WILD RELEASE NOTES:
I was really looking forward to sinking my metaphorical teeth in to this one, only to discover that I have tonnes of work on at the moment, and bookrings galore streaming in the door.
A relative has this book on their bookshelf, and as I have held onto this book for long enough, I'm posting it on unfinished to Cat207.
I did enjoy what little I did read though... rather curious...
I have read this one before, but really don't want to part with my personal copy, so I'm looking forward to passing this one onto other readers and seeing their comments!
I found it a fascinating book, with all its stories within stories. And one of the best openings of all time: misbound! (I had a Winter's Night moment with Cloud Atlas and almost took it back to the shop to complain about it being bound incorrectly with missing pages, so I did appreciate this!)
I shall see if I can organise another bookray for this one.
Popped in the post to davemurray101 today.
20/02 - definitely on the weird list - between The Atrocity Exhibition and Naked lunch. Went off on a lot of tangents and I may just need to reread it to get it a bit better. PMing Bug2004 to send it on.
CONTROLLED RELEASE NOTES:
SENT TO Bug2004 IN THE POST.
Mailed off today.