Thursday, April 25, 2013

Matryoshka doll and incomplete books

Those of you who have read Cloud Atlas would probably know that the book's overall structure is based on the principle of a Matryoshka doll. The six stories are spread out in such a way that the first one is left halfway to be completed at the end of the book, the second one is completed second last, and so on. The middle story is complete and it has certain elements (am sure I can find some more when I re-read the book) that subtly strings all of the stories together. Very interesting idea, and a rather good book.

Now. What does this have to do with incomplete books?

This year has been a lull period in terms of reading. More than the books I have read, I have left incomplete books. Some of them have been carried from last year. Here is a list of books I have not finished, since last year:
  • The Lies of Locke Lamora - Scott Lynch
  • Kingdom's End: Selected Stories - Saadat Hasan Manto (Since this one is short stories, it can be read as and when.)
  • The Wind-up Bird Chronicle - Haruki Murakami (Yes, I know! Maybe I picked this book at the wrong time.)
  • Embassytown by China Mieville (Not this books fault. Though it is a bit hard to get into. People say that it gets better after page 50 or so. The ideas and concepts are indeed mind blowing so far! But, I am simply waiting for Infinite Jest!)
That's how we take the detour to Infinite Jest. Yes. I have been reading so much about this book and it's colossal size in terms of pages and thoughts, and the admiration it elicits from the folks who love it. As soon as I could manage up some more courage over the usual book-hoarding obsession, I ordered this book (Though it can be said that it is an indirect gift. Hint: Voucher).

So, Infinite Jest is on it's way. I am not sure what double meaning this earlier line carries. It also is a reference to Hamlet (Hail internet-scholars!). The book sounds promising though. Very promising. I am equally scared and excited to start it. I know it's huge (about 1000+ pages) and dense, and I know I will have to work towards reading it, with patience, and at this juncture I think I will be able to read it, but the coming days will speak more.

Then after finishing IJ (look at the bravado!), whenever I do complete it, I would like to complete the other books in the order I left them.

How's that? Sounds good right now!

Matryoshka doll made of books,
not as easy as it looks,
Infinite Jest might be the one that binds,
to connect the unassociated minds. 

No comments: