I Told You I Was Picky…


There are all sorts of interesting book blogs I am finding. I am learning as I go and relying quite heavily on the blogs linked over to the right. >>>

Mondays, just one more page hosts Musing Mondays, and I thought I’d play along.

How do you feel about books written in a differing format –

whether this be journals or letters (epistolary), verse novels, or any other form?

Is this something you enjoy? Or do you prefer straight forward chapter prose.

Hmm. I’m picky about this. I enjoy books that include letters or diary entries. I’m thinking specifically of Possession by A.S. Byatt or Mary Shelley’s Frankenstein. I even like books that include some prose and some poetry. I was amused by Kurt Vonnegut’s Mother Night, which intertwines prose and drawings. It’s a careful balance for me, and although recently I’ve read some bloggers who are picking up novels in verse, I just haven’t been tempted.

Graphic novels, on the other hand, hooked me relatively quickly. Again, I would be selective, but I first read Watchmen on suggestion of a close friend and really enjoyed it. It was nothing at all like a comic book, which was what I had anticipated. Of course, my idea of comic books were Archie and Veronica, things of those nature. While enjoyable, I never wanted to read an entire book of Archie comics. I read Marjane Satrapi’s Persepolis shortly thereafter and was hooked. There are many different ways to look at graphic novels, and Satrapi herself will discuss the motivations behind her black and white drawings (I saw her speak in Houston a couple years ago). For me, though, I am not distracted by the format, which is key. If I felt distracted, I wouldn’t finish it. I would actually like to read more graphic literature and have Fun Home: A Family Tragicomic by Allison Bechdel shipping as we speak.

So to address the topic more succinctly — the manner of introduction to the format would matter as would the importance the author places on the format. I did not like Avatar (hold your rotten vegetables) because absolutely no care was put into the story, but it was profoundly beautiful in a visual sense. That, to me, is lazy. I expect a lot from a novel I read. It is an investment of my time, and I do not like to have it wasted (see yesterday’s post re: reading). When the two – format and content – meld well, I should not be overwhelmed by format and underwhelmed by content. Or vice versa.

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4 responses to “I Told You I Was Picky…

  • Elena

    Ah, no rotten vegetables from me, I agree about Avatar (you’re talking about the movie I’m assuming)

    I wouldn’t naturally pick a book that was written in a strange format, however I’m easily swayed by the recommendations of close friends/trusted bloggers.

    Actually this gets me wondering, what is Wuthering Heights, in a format sense? The story is told by outsiders, observing parties, it’s not a traditional narration in that sense.

    Woah. Sorry. I write super long comments. This is a cool blog though, I don’t think there’s anything wrong with being picky..er, discerning. 😉

  • Jennifer Oberth

    Congrats on your first Monday Musings post – I’m a recent player as well.

    My full response is here.

    I agree about the quality of the writing and the care that goes into it. You can tell. Books or movies – you can tell.

  • pickygirlfoodfilmfiction

    Thanks so much. How long have you been blogging? I just started but am really enjoying all the community as well as the solitary act of blogging.

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