I mentioned that I'm going through my Raymond Carver Collected Stories edition lately like I do from time to time - he's an all-time fave and I've read him multiple times. There's a story of his "Night School" - not even a major story and extremely short too - sometimes I take it one way, sometimes another and other times many different ways in between.
I know there's a right interpretation but...........I kind of don't want to know. I like the mystery or at least the mystery I'm imposing on the story. Do you have stories or books that you can't figure out exactly and that's specifically the element that you like? This isn't like an "ambiguous" film either since well, you're reading it after all, on some level the text should be resolvable to you. Not sure if this post is even clear which makes it kind of more appropriate........
February 27, 2017 at 12:06 : distain (pupdurcs) posted on Gold Derby:
I love stuff like this, in books, movies, even (maybe especially!) songs.
While I do feel that I now get a lot of the main ideas Pynchon was conveying in Gravity's Rainbow ("The War is reshaping the universe in its image" - the "War" obviously meaning much, much more than WWII - and the Dodo sequence are, in my eyes, the key to understanding this thing as best as one can), I've never read something that has repeatedly crushed my interpretations of it so many times as I was going through it, and I'm still not sure how I would try to describe it to someone, or even how I would describe how I felt about it to someone, beyond saying it's an extremely layered and disturbing masterwork. Almost every time I thought I had something nailed (ah, yes, Slothrop will become more "human" in the Zone) I'd read the next section (aaand here's the horrifying scenes on the Anubis) and be left utterly baffled in terms of what I was supposed to be taking from this...and things only really started to fully fall into place for me by the ending of Part 3, around 75% of the way through...but even then, a lot of the "sense" it made was on a very weird (but powerful - almost overwhelming) subconscious level that I'm not sure I could put into words. I was absolutely in love with this aspect of the book, and it's a big reason why it's one of my very favorites. When art can do that - completely pull you in by leaving you in the dark about so much (and especially in a case like this, where everything is so clearly deliberate) - it's a really amazing thing, and clearly the work of a master.
I tried really hard to get into Infinite Jest, but I just couldn't. Granted, I only read about 200/800 pages of it, but it was all over the fucking place and not really my cup of tea.
Being the board's resident Infinite Jest fan I'm obligated to say that it's worth giving another shot if you're ever interested. If you go into it through the lens of it primarily being a book about the emotional pain born from a father failing to communicate with his son and the ways people hurt themselves looking for happiness (just tune the whacky US/Canada political stuff out a bit), it's actually pretty easy to digest after a certain point. Of course, if your main problem with it was the prose, you probably won't end up loving it. Wallace maintains the very hyper-exaggerated style throughout the whole thing.