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Author Topic: Dhalgren
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I think I've dug through this site quite well, but didn't notice any mention to your thought's on Delaney's Magnum Opus (kinda), Dhalgren. Since it follows a lot of the same stream of conscience prose style that made you hate Ulysees so much, I was just curious what's your take on this Science-Fiction classic was.

I personally love it, that's just me, though.

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Orson Scott Card
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I read it when it was new. I remember finding many parts of it fascinating, but the affectations - and the countercultural attitude of the hero - kept me at a distance. I admired much of it, but never actually cared. Which I suspect would not distress Delany a bit, since I don't think he intended readers to get emotionally involved in a naive-identification kind of way. Since I ALWAYS intend that, and look for it in books I read, we can safely say that I'm not in the natural audience for Dhalgren, though I admire Delany's talent and have had many thoughtful hours considering his ideas.
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I started that book 20 years ago. It's still somewhere in my basement, gathering dust, with an old "Yellow Umbrella Bookstore" bookmark stuck in in somewwher halfway through at page 700 or something.

It was one of those books that I knew--as a science fiction reader--that I should have read, but I found it so boring and drawn out, it felt more like pennance.

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Oobie Binoobie
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Kiss of death for any book. That happened to me with _The Fellowship of the Ring_ around page 70. But I'm glad I slogged past it, now. _The Two Towers_ was Tolkein's pinnacle, and I wouldn't have read it had I not gotten past the first one.
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Verily the Younger
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That happened to me with The Fellowship of the Ring as well. I got as far as Tom Bombadil (over a hundred pages) before I realized that I didn't care about anyone in the story. (Except Bilbo, whom I already knew and cared about from The Hobbit, but he made a conscious decision at the very beginning to not even be part of the story.) I got so bored I put it down mid-chapter (I never put books down mid-chapter when I can help it!) and haven't picked it back up again. This was something like a year ago. Everyone says how wonderful and brilliant that blasted trilogy is, but all I kept asking myself for those hundred pages was, "Why am I reading this?" Sigh.
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Ditto with Fellowship of the Ring. The whole Tom Bombadil thing left me very lost and wondering how in the world that advanced the story. I can totally see why they left it out of the movie, it really doesn't move the plot at all. But the rest of that book, and I think all of the other two in the trilogy, were great. I can't recall that happening to me during the Hobbit, either. And I'm happy to say it hasn't ever happened in an OSC book either, and I doubt it ever will.
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