Bopping with Niall JP O'Leary

Niall O'Leary insists on sharing his hare-brained notions and hysterical emotions. Personal obsessions with cinema, literature, food and alcohol feature regularly.

Sunday, August 20, 2006

I stayed in this morning, deciding to read, rest and write this. I apologise in advance (and retrospectively) for all my reviewing etc.. I was going to try to separate it out from everything else, probably with headings, but on second thoughts, everything is too bound up together. Sorry.

Just finished "Franny and Zooey". Salinger is a master of his craft and particularly in the first 80 pages creates, truly CREATES, a family. Their eccentricity no doubt helps, but he does a very difficult job apparently effortlessly. However, when he deals with the meat and potatoes of the whole thing, the "religion" bit, I must confess to drifting a little. Sure, he's taking a spiritual approach to a very basic human problem, the need for meaning in our lives, but it's just too narrow for me. This is ironic given the breadth of reference he makes - he knows his topic inside and out - but like Franny, I end up feeling a little preached to by Zooey. To his credit, he never makes either Franny or Zooey seem pretentious, they are honest in their angst. Anyhow it's a masterclass for writers, but a little disappointing for readers.


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