Monday, December 28, 2009


Thomas Mann's first novel proceeds along seeming without any holiday reference. Aside from stilted Christian ritual and a penchant for arranged marriages, the family speeds along until around p. 514 when the wonder of Christmas is captured by the febrile dreams of observations of young Hanno. The 18 pages depicting the event stand aside from an already remarkable novel, an exercise in narrative fluidity which sparkles as it allows the narrative to resume its path.

I hope that everyone felt a similar wonder over the course of our recent holiday; I know that I enjoyed what was likely the coziest time in memory.

I finished Buddenbrooks yesterday. I am now enjoying one of the gifts my wife gave me: Oblomov by Ivan Gonchorov.

I just read here that Faulkner is quoted as saying that Buddenbrooks was his favorite novel and Scott Esposito muses that Mann may have inspired Sound and the Fury. I find that quite interesting.


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