Sunday, May 8, 2011

Bel Canto (Ann Patchett) + the nature of journeys

sunday. and the sun is back. i will spent today reading, a book i ordered second hand: "Bel Canto" by Ann Patchett. started it yesterday. it's one amazing read. playful, vast, capturing.

i didn't know Ann Patchett before, i picked Bel Canto from the list of Orange Prize books. after the third chapter, i got curious for the author, googled her name, and arrived at a long interview with her, online at Powell's Books: "Author Interview Ann Patchett". here's a line from it:

"Probably the single thing that had the biggest artistic influence on me was The Poseidon Adventure. That was the first time I saw something that made me think, Oh, that's what plot is: you're going along, it's fine, then everything turns upside down; people band together, sacrifices are made, there's passion, there's loss, there's a journey, and at the end you cut a hole in the boat and you come out into the light. That's what this book is, in a sense, except for the part about coming out into the light."

a book as a journey, i thought. it makes perfect sense. even more so, to read it while on a journey.

and more: turns out, Powell has a huge archive of author interviews. here: Powell Author Interviews. i read a second of them, the one with Julie Powell - i have seen Julie and Julia recentlty, but hadn't known that the film was based on a book that is a true story.

reading through Julie Powell's interview, i arrived at another line on journeys: "That wasn't the goal, to tie a bow around it (the book / phase of life). The goal is to experience it and see how it changes. I certainly have resolved some things with myself, but it's important that it's a journey, and that you keep yourself open to how things change and grow as you go through life."

and a quick note on the book that i read before "Bel Canto" - it's a german one, "K√ľrzere Tage" / "Shorter Days". while Bel Canto is about being taken hostage in a villa at a big event, Shorter Days is about the usual life of 2 families who got trapped in their own expectations of life. read it in 2 days. so good, to have those longer days of reading.

1 comment:

Brigita said...

Reading your post made me want to re-read Bel Canto. I loved that book. It's beautifully written and very powerful. A great read.