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Thread: Books with a lot interesting asides/tangents similar to Salinger/Murakami?

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    Books with a lot interesting asides/tangents similar to Salinger/Murakami?

    Okay, another recommendation topic
    This time the topic concerns novels that are.. well, to put it in simple terms, "pointless" in many parts haha.. but still interesting.
    Examples would be.. Murakami's work such as Hard-Boiled Wonderland and The Wind-Up Bird Chronicle, Neal Stephenson's Cryptonomicon, Thomas Pynchon's V... and unlike my other topic I've recently made, I don't want "difficult" books with a lot of substance.. just something with a lot of interesting information. But, preferably fiction, because if I wanted info I could read nonfiction..
    Basically, like, streamlined stream-of-consciousness, I guess? Not actual stream-of-consciousness, though.
    Also, another comparison in a different way would be J.D. Salinger's Seymour: An Introduction.. just, a thorough character analysis like that short story is. Thanks! =D

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    Two Gun Kid Idril's Avatar
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    Milan Kundera has a lot of those little tangents. He often seems to have two threads going through his books, the main narrative and then a little side thing. In one book, I belive it was Immortality, the alternate thread was Goethe and Hemmingway hanging out in heaven and a lot of details about Goethe's personal life and then there were a few things about Salvador Dali in there as well and it only had the tiniest of connections to the main story of Paul and Agnes and the drama of their life. Sometimes the tangent is religious in nature, sometimes it's political and sometimes it's philosophical but it's usually interesting and random and slightly bizarre.

    Dostoevsky is another master of tangents, I think Brothers Karamazov is the prime example of that, although there is evidence of it in almost everything he wrote.
    the luminous grass of the prairie hides
    feet lovely and still as sleeping doves,
    porcelain bones strong enough to carry a life,
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    As black Dakota hills.
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  5. #5
    Registered User Etienne's Avatar
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    Oct 2007
    Resurrection by Tolstoy as well. And if you really like those tangents, then read Aldous Huxley (not Brave New World though, but his "essay" books), but you have to REALLY like those tangents, as he always get in those tangents and never get out. It's interesting though, you just have not to focus too much on the main line and expect to get from chicken to donkey every second page.
    Last edited by Etienne; 11-05-2007 at 12:33 AM.

  6. #6
    Artist and Bibliophile stlukesguild's Avatar
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    Surely the granddaddy of all such novels is Lawrence Sterne's Tristam Shandy... which is a brilliant read at that.
    Beware of the man with just one book. -Ovid
    The man who doesn't read good books has no advantage over the man who can't read them.- Mark Twain
    My Blog: Of Delicious Recoil

  7. #7
    The Poetic Warrior Dark Muse's Avatar
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    Tom Robbins likes to go off on tagents within his books a lot. Though in most cases they can be quite amusing and intresting. His writing on a whole is completely unique and quite unlike anything else.

    I would most highly reccomend Skinny Legs and All, and Still Life With a Woodpecker

    Another intresting one is Morpho Eugenia by A. S. Byatt goes into some odd little tangents but overall I did enjoy the story.

    Last but not least would be a Heart Breaking Work of Staggering Genuis, by Dave Eggers. I thought this was an amazing book, but it was quite the tagent but I would say wonderfully well done

    Deep into that darkness peering, long I stood there, wondering, fearing, doubting, dreaming dreams no mortal ever dared to dream before. ~ Edgar Allan Poe

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