I've been attempting to find my way through Ayn Rand's Atlas Shrugged since roughly January last year. I've heard both good and bad things about it but it's increasingly looking like I'll never form an opinion of my own about it as I'm seriously considering giving up.

It's not that it's a bad book per se, more like it's just too damn verbose. A point can be laboured for tens of pages. Whole chapters can provide little real progress.

This annoys me as I rather like the setting, the characters, and the core concepts. They're flawed, certainly, and there's a ridiculous amount of strawmanning, but there's at least an underlying idea that I want to have a think about even if I might ultimately disagree with it. Or not.

The book is nearly 1200 pages, or at least my copy is, and it takes me about an hour to read about 50 pages. That in itself isn't the barrier - time I have plenty of - it's simply the fact that it doesn't pull me in enough to make me want to keep up the pace.

A book that is easy for me to read might take just as long to read but I don't find myself keeping track of my progress or the amount of time it has taken. Atlas Shrugged on the other hand is in dire need of an editor.

Given my enjoyment of the narrative though I think I may take an alternative approach to finishing it. I've done a quick search and found what appears to be an unabridged audio book. I think I'll get my grubby meathooks on it and see if that can help me push through the vichyssoise of verbiage.

It's somewhat of a relief to be seriously considering shelving it (aha...) as I have a bit of a backlog of books that I'd like to tackle. I've put off reading Pratchett's Snuff for months in an effort to motivate myself but I think after more than a year it's perhaps time to call it a day.

0 responses to "tl;dr"

Leave a Reply