Spectacles

“He had read endless books, he had digested them, pondered over them. Day by day, year after year, he had turned over all the problems of human beings. Yet there were all sorts of simple things he didn’t know how to do: he couldn’t even walk into an inn and sit down at a table.”

– Georges Simenon, The Strangers in the House

Finished this book this afternoon. I think Simenon’s terrific but he’s one of those authors I can’t read a lot of in one go. Great stuff and he’s writing on all cylinders here, but if I spend too long with his style it becomes so transparent it’s like seeing how the magician does his tricks.

Character-arc spoilers: The novel’s about a drunken recluse. At the end he’s still a drunk, but no longer a recluse. This is something of a happy ending.

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4 responses to “Spectacles”

  1. Rick Bowes says :

    He wrote the same novel a couple of hundred times – but it’s one hell of a novel!

  2. asakiyume says :

    Interesting what you say about being able to see through the writing to the tricks. I’d never really thought about it, but I do find that to be the case with a number of writers when I read a lot of them.

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