A book with not a single likable character. I have this thing that when I read books, I give them about one third, or one fourth, depending on the overall length, to hook me. If by that (paginated) time I am still lukewarm or downright uninterested, I proceed to speed read it, that is, scan pages and pick up 2 or 3 sentences while going. There are two reasons for that: I prefer it to leaving the book unread while at the same time I am not wasting – that same time – doing something not really worth that time i.e reading the book in full. Now Paulo Coelho has a good reputation and I (as plenty of other readers out there…) have enjoyed The Alchemist, although it was a long time ago and I don’t remember keeping any of the philosophies in my little pocket and ready to use. All I remember is that it was a pleasant reading experience and for all I know, some wisdom has possibly subliminally infiltrated my mind and helped me figure out some things that needed figuring out at a certain point in time. I mean, it’s possible. AA, that is – after the Alchemist – I read maybe 2 of his books but was not terribly impressed. This ‘Adultery’ is very simplistic in both the writing style and the plot. It’s funny how reviewers who really like Coelho, or are selling the book, or I don’t know…try to pull out a philosophical note out of it when really there is none – at least nothing you could not find in a cheap romance novel. After reading a book, one is supposed to feel at least a little bit smarter, a little bit more accomplished, a little bit happier about adding another novel to their ‘read’ (past tense) list…but that does not happen with Adultery. The story is a non-story, and the characters…well, you just wish that all four of them (major ones) had jumped in Lake Geneva (the story takes place in Geneva) and disappeared by the end of page 1 (please remember that these are fictional characters) and saved you both time and money (the book would have been cheaper with 2 pages). So, out of five stars, I’d give it zero…actually I’d give it minus one given that this is Coelho and I had certain expectation.
What to read instead:
Papa Hemingway written by Hemingway’s interviewer-turned-friend Aaron Hotchner: it’s a biography that is as interesting as a masterfully crafted adventure fiction book! And please note that you don’t have to be a Hemingway literature fan to enjoy and be inspired by his life story. Highly recommended!
Grafitti is almost an anagram of art gratis and is definitely an example of it – profanities, political declarations and sports teams’ support (unless of pictorial nature) excluded. Some cities are better ‘museums’ than others relative to street art but great examples can be seen almost anywhere. Doesn’t it take a wonderfully talented artist to fresco-secco this with paints that dry almost instantly: