Thanks to Sam @ My Pen, My Voice for the nomination. It’s my first award too! I can get round to it now that I’ve got an hour to kill in a train station waiting room. These places feel like purgatory, don’t they?
Anyway, here goes:
Recently I listened to the Guardian’s interview with the author of Neuromancer, William Gibson, who in a fleeting comment about his own methods of characterisation quoted E. M. Forster. I really liked the quote which Gibson used; it went along the lines of “if a writer is in complete control of his characters, then he isn’t doing it right”. (Terrible exemplar of a literature student but I can’t find this quote at present!)
Anyhow, I just casually put it down on my TBR list and really thought I’ll try get round to it. I had a brief search on my kindle for the book and I think I remember getting the book for free (Memory’s a fickle thing…!)
I have to say, I’m really enjoying this book. Originally, it had actually been a series of lectures that Forster gave in Cambridge, but it’s witty and original and more than that, it’s widening my knowledge about traditions of the novel.
The pages are littered with idioms about writing and the book itself is structured into five parts which Forster sees as necessity to the novel: the story; people; the plot; fantasy and prophecy; pattern and rhythm. Having derived from a lecture format, it’s conversational tone and humour are actually quite light and enjoyable and yet it’s got that academic, informative feel.
Definitely recommend, especially to creative writer, budding or not.
“Cyberspace. A consensual hallucination experienced daily by billions of legitimate operators, in every nation, by children being taught mathematical concepts . . . A graphic representation of data abstracted from the banks of every computer in the human system. Unthinkable complexity. Lines of light ranged in the nonspace of the mind, clusters and constellations of data. Like city lights, receding”.
1984 was a year in my mind which was literarily dominated by George Orwell and the Orwellian dystopian atmosphere.
Until I read this. Continue reading “BOOK REVIEW ◊ N e u r o m a n c e r ◊ by William Gibson”
This was not my first time reading A Thousand Splendid Suns, the novel published by Khaled Housseni in 2007. I came across this book in my A-levels when I was looking for a book to write about for my coursework. I didn’t choose it. I know now in hindsight that when I first read the book, I felt intellectually inadequate to talk about the political and social unrest, the harrowing experiences of these female characters and also about the great courage, resilience and endurance of Afghanistan.
Hosseini’s study of Afghanistan here makes a powerful and captivating book- one that I only put down to dry my teary eyes and running nose (I cried that much!!). I fell in love with this author’s tale about two aghan women whose lives are forced together in the tumultuous political and social period between the 1950s and 1990s in Afghanistan. Part of the power of this book lays with how the female characters steal your heart, but will simultaneously break it too.
The debut historical fiction novel written by Tracy Borman – joint Chief Curator of the Historic Royal Palaces, Chief Executive of the Heritage Education Trust and above all, University of Hull alumni!
A Thousand Splendid Suns, by Khaled Housseini
“Somethings I can teach you. Some you learn from books. But there are things that, well, you just have to see and feel”.
Hakim, Laila’s babi