Friday, August 28, 2009

Fighting over a dead man

My uncle lent me a book to read. Funeral Games, by Mary Renault. Difficult. Mostly because of the names. One might think that names aren't THAT important, but these are all Greek.

I think that many of the people in this historical novel snuff it throughout the latter half of the book. Probably okay, as I am less vested in them than in their environment. This is like a whodunit in which one by one they go to the woodshed, and don't return.

The author doesn't like women - Alexander's wives Stateira and Roxanne are dull and conniving, vengefull and vicious. None of the other women in Alexander's life are pleasant either. They're bitches, bitches, just bitches.

At least his scheming generals and friends are fairly emotionally honest about their greed and their hunger for power, brutally honest. Their honesty destroys everything Alexander achieved.

The nicest and most likeable character is probably the one man who dominates the tale by not being there - he's been dead since the beginning. Because his friends, lovers, and soldiers have such intensity for him, they remain rather human, and the story stays gripping.


周小燕

1 comment:

  1. Wednesday, September 23, 2009
    Shocking video: the San Francisco Jewish Film Festival - Exposed
    This two-part short film about the 2009 SF Jewish Film Festival speaks more eloquently than a 100 blog posts about what is wrong with the Film Festival and how important it is that organized Jewish community act to ensure that something like this never happens again under Federation auspices.


    http://sfjffwatch.blogspot.com/2009/09/shocking-video-san-francisco-jewish.html


    ...perhaps the most obscene is the treatment of the sole pro-Israel questioner, who was jeered, manhandled and bullied as he tried to, as some are fond of saying, speak truth to power.

    ReplyDelete