I managed to finish yet another book. I don’t know why but every time I do, it appears like a big deal to me. It could be the lack of belief in myself or something else. Over the years I’ve read many books almost without prejudice, hence no matter whom the author or what the genre… I would be more than happy to read it—except for Tom Clancy’s or anything similar to that. In doing so I also developed interests in certain genres and writers. Today, however I only read materials that are either really entertaining, according to preferred genres or by authors who comes highly recommended or authors whom books I’ve read before.
Although I do read for the sake of entertainment, I rather think that I read to gain a wider knowledge and perhaps gain a better perspective on things. Knowing that I am about to learn something new and that I am doing something beneficial adds to life being a tad more productive.
I too have gained an interest in reading books by foreign writers, by foreign I mean not from the states or the UK. And when it comes to Malaysian authors, I become prejudiced and immediately my interest in reading them crashes down…maybe because Malaysian writers are crap. I do read Kesusasteraan melayu though, I had to at school and upon reading I discovered the wonders of reading. In other words, because of that I started reading; I owe it all to kesusasteraan.
Normally I don’t write about the books I read but this one, this one deserves a few commentaries at the least. As you may know already, by reading certain materials…the contains at times might influence/effect one’s mind for a brief period especially during and right after finishing it.
I too have a penchant on reading books by Japanese authors such as Junichiro Tanizaki, Haruki Murakami and a few others. This one if I am not mistaken was the first of a Japanese woman author (Natsuo Kirino). Knowing that she authored a few other books that have won or at least been nominated at prestigious book awards increased my interest on wanting to read it.
If you’re familiar with Japanese books, the novels are normally written in the form of a memoir and are more than often deadly honest, either that or I just happen to read books such as that. The writers too appear Uncaring on what others might think. This to me is impressive.
Okay enough of rambling; this particular book is entitled ‘Grotesque’ I knew that these authors were as honest as one gets as I mentioned before and to give you an picture, by honest I mean, any flashing or brief thoughts will also be accounted for which goes to show that their attentiveness to details.
Maybe I am just being sensitive or overwhelmed because I just finished it. But although I am clearly exaggerating here, I would go as far to say that it took a little part of my soul away.
As u read along you’d notice a deep sense of loneliness in the characters and how each and everyone compare themselves to others and how they seek acceptance. Even though it reeks of realism and everyday life, I can’t help but notice the pessimism in the author. The book, as you read and think that it couldn’t get any worse, just gets worse. To put it simply it’s gets pathetic, even more than pathetic and reaches beyond pathetic as you go along.
It also notifies on how the cold classist society that we live in begins from a very young age and nurtures one to become the accordingly when they grow up. Time and time again the characters cease not to point out that one’s fate is decided the day it’s born.
And I as a reader, as I try to escape the harsh and cruel realities of life by means of escapism through reading, the reader is pulled into an even crueler revelation of life.
It also gives an impression that no matter what u do by profession, how beautiful you are you will end up old and old age becomes a wicked realization in the end all one would succumb to; is an empty hole and a meaningless life and will have to live according to what is set by society; Leaving death as a release.
And that no matter how rich, smart, beautiful, talented or pure one will succumb into becoming a slave for material and petty rules of society, in this book prostitution.
While the oppressed remains oppressed the oppressor too is oppressed
Having said all that I have, I would like to add that people or authors lacking in belief and spirituality can only get so far, despite having an in-depth consciousness, precision in life and a high level of intelligence. A person without spirituality can go as far and still remain empty.
Lastly I would say that this book is basically a whirlwind of expressions concerning the reality and sadness of life. One might think that it is overly done and overly dramatized but it is simply the truth of the worsening condition of the current state of society.