It is quite hard to sit with this book. I read most of your posts and nodded my head because the content didn’t seem to live up to the blurb and those awesome lines in the beginning where Atwood strings the words ‘shipwrecks’ ‘romance’ ‘jungles’ ‘tropical islands’ ‘mountains’ ‘space’ together. I’m not too fond of her characters and I find myself unable to follow the story completely but I’m reading on because Atwood is famous for literary surprises. She ties stories together at the end but even before reaching that point, I’m just reading for the writing.
I read parts of this book out loud and discovered that there’s a distinct voice and rhythm. She’s really a talented writer. Also, somewhere in the 200’s and 300’s are snippets about Buddhism, quotes from Tennyson and allusions to Oscar Wilde. So yeah, I’m keeping my thumb locked on this lowly 100th page.
Also, how do you feel about world-making in relation to affairs? I think this is why I have a soft spot for this book. The language of affairs is a language of make-believe here it is: the story of two people who built their own world in order to fit into an already existing one. Plus the epigraphs which a lot of people think are too much for any book to start with seem perfect for this one. The Polish journalist, Kapuscinski plus the writing on an urn from Carthage and Sheila Watson’s words seem to highlight the whole world-making/destroying thing. Hmm, what do you think?