Thursday, March 24, 2005

Book Survey Meme Update

Stuart of From Despair To Where fame has kept his side of the bargain and completed the Book Survey Meme mentioned in a previous post. We are definitely kindred spirits with our mutual admiration for Patrick Hamilton and Charles Bukowski.
I've always meant to read Confederacy of Dunces, and Stuart's strong recommendation means that it gets bumped up the list of books that I should read in the immediate future. Mention of Disaffection is also an interesting choice. I read the novel about 13 years ago, when I jumped headlong into all things Kelman, but I have to be honest and admit that my memory of the novel today is at best sketchy. However, all these years on, I remember enough of the novel to understand where Stuart is coming from when he writes: "This novel makes for very uncomfortable reading. Too close to the bone. But bloody brilliant. The last book to make me cry."
Maybe it's time for me to re-read it.


DespairToWhere said...

Disaffection may not even be Kelman's best. I've only read that and How Late. But loved both of them. If you get round to re-reading that, or Confederacy of Dunces, I'd be interested to hear what you thought.
All the best

John said...

Hated Disaffection and How Late. The James Kelman bus just pased me by completely.

Confederacy made me laugh out loud in places and then ended up by dragging on apparently pointlessly, so that I was disappointed after everyone had hyped it so much. Compared with most of the crap that's out there, it's certainly a stand-out, but I'm still waiting for a book to rival relative unknowns like "Milk, Sulphate and Alby Starvation" and "Bigot Hall" for constant comedy and wit.