From: "Alice K. Turner"
Subject: Re: (urth) alga's experiences with 5HC Date: Sun, 14 Apr 2002 10:07:01 -0400 From: "Michael Andre-Driussi" > Alga wrote: > >In my own case, I fell for 5H because of its perversity and cruelty. I think > >(I really don't recall) that I first read only the first novella, which I > >found (and find) dazzling, a model of what science fiction could do if it > >grew up.(Does that mean I consider perversity and cruelty to be grown up?) > > Well iirc you don't like (Harold Bloom's favorite) A VOYAGE TO ARCTURUS > enough to re-read it because it is too much in the perversity and cruelty > dept. So maybe the 5HC novella marks the practical limit for your tastes? > Terminus est, as it were. Not fair: Arcturus is crude beside 5H, and the violence is cartoonish and nasty (though not nearly so dumb as in Bloom's own book, Lucifer). 5H's violence is subtle and dreadful; if you recall I also lovved "Shayol" for the sheer ingenuity (and perversity) of its cruelty. New Sun has some of the same flavor. especially in the first book. To admit the dreadful truth, I even liked the Elric books when they first started coming out--of course I was pretty young then. So I guess I'm sort of attracted to cruelty, but totally repelled by coarseness and crude violence. Come to think of it, I like J.M. Coatzee for some of the same reasons, though there is (for me) more pathos in his writing (the good books--Ratty, you would like some of Coatzee; if he's not a Christian, he does a good imitation of one). > This is the bit that still surprises me! Because you were so enthused > about "Tracking Song," I find it hard to remember that you don't like "`A > Story' by John V. Marsch." I always expect that this would be your > =favorite= of the three novellas in 5HC, because, in my mind, at least, I > tend to think: "A Story" is like "Tracking Song" and "The Tale of the Boy > Called Frog." You have far too good a memory! I myself don't recall not liking that story...er, may I say as gracefully as possible that I have changed my mind? I love that story. In fact maybe I'll read it again today. > You don't have to explain or anything, alga! I'm just saying that it > surprises me, which in turn shows my shaky grasp on things. Oh yes I do! And you're the least shaky of us. I have just proved my own shakiness. -alga --