Monday, October 19, 2009

Two Books

Maybe this is a factor of age and experience but I find it increasingly difficult to find an author whose writing I enjoy book after book. It didn't used to be this way before - maybe I expected less then or perhaps I am already done reading the pool of books I will love for life. When I read Patrick Suskind's Perfume I thought I had at the long last found an author who would thrill me time after time. Then I read Mr Summer's Story. Had I read the books in reverse order chances are I would have not even tried Perfume - and the loss would be entirely mine. Sometimes, the author's purpose in writing what they write is so inaccessible to the reader that they end up missing the point of it entirely. Such may be the case with Suskind's Mr. Summer. As much as I tried and wanted to, I just did not end up getting it.

Naturally there is a strong element of disappointment - specially when a previous book was entirely enjoyable and its premise fully appreciable. It feels like discovering that your best friend is not really the person you had though them to be. It puts your entire relationship on a shaky footing. No matter what they do to help you regain your confidence, it is never quite the old thing that you shared. So it is with writers - one disappointment and you hesitate to return to them. With Suskind, with a third book I would wonder if it will be more like Mr Summer's Story or Perfume or another third thing that will disappoint in its own way.

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