- Taschenbuch: 1232 Seiten
- Verlag: Vintage; Auflage: New Ed (1. November 2007)
- Sprache: Englisch
- ISBN-10: 0099512335
- ISBN-13: 978-0099512332
- Größe und/oder Gewicht: 12,9 x 5,2 x 19,8 cm
- Durchschnittliche Kundenbewertung: 4 Kundenrezensionen
- Amazon Bestseller-Rang: Nr. 82.175 in Fremdsprachige Bücher (Siehe Top 100 in Fremdsprachige Bücher)
Against the Day (Englisch) Taschenbuch – 20. September 2007
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"A fine example of a successful marriage between the popular and intellectual, between fiction and science... gloriously, demandingly, daringly, Pynchon has rediscovered vulgarity and continues to prove the novel has never been more vibrant, more various or better able to represent our complex world. Give this book your time - you'll agree its worth it" (Michael Moorcock Daily Telegraph)
"The greatest, wildest author of his generation" (Ian Rankin Guardian)
"Against the Day is a rollercoaster ride that soars, plummets and often loops the loop.... A fantastic chronicle of how the world came into being... there is a beautifully humane, compassionate energy arcing through the book...Pynchon is the only living American author who unreservedly deserves the Nobel Prize for Literature" (Stuart Kelly Scotland on Sunday)
"It is a serious book and the finest thing Pynchon has done since Gravity's Rainbow. It should be acknowledged, nonetheless that Against The Day is immensely funny, an intricate, wheezing shaggy dog joke holds you in its grip for a thousand pages. Quite a feat" (Tom Adair Scotsman)
"It is brilliant...There's a wonderful gathering tenderness - and Pynchon writes some of the most beautiful sentences you are ever likely to come across" (Spectator)
'All that is glorious and exhilarating about Pynchon is found here... a mighty novel that will delight Pynchonians and seduce newcomers' - Observer.Alle Produktbeschreibungen
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Es gibt sogar so etwas wie einen Plot, der viele der im Roman auftauchenden Figuren, sei es auch noch so periphär, miteinander verbindet. Im Auftrag des grundbösen Großkapitalisten Scarsdale Vibe wird der Anarchist Webb Traverse von den beiden Auftragskillern Deuce Kindred und Sloat Fresno ermordet. Webbs Söhne schwören Rache, was sie im Laufe der Handlung aus unterschiedlichsten Gründen in alle Ecken der Welt und darüber hinaus verschlägt. Kit studiert, auf Kosten von Scarsdale Vibe, Mathematik in Göttingen, bis Vibe sich eines besseren besinnt und Kit auf seine persönliche Abschussliste setzt.Lesen Sie weiter... ›
Spanning over roughly a quarter century and more than a thousand pages, the reader finds himself literally overwhelmed by both, thinkess and precision. The spiderweb of correlating plotlines rolls over your mind boulder-like, but paradoxically maintains a lofty grandeur: Against the day is a rock with gems lingering on the inside.
We follow the Traverse family, with patriarch Webb, deeply influenced by Anarchist beliefs, as he lives his rebellious life towards a better America. Upon his assassination by Webb's nemesis Scarsdale Vibe, the plotlines around the rest of the "Dalton's" diverge into a myriad of different destinies, travelling to every part of the world.
Pynchon's extraordinary language that grasps not only landscapes, but also characters and scientifical notions, depicts the modern world of the fin-de-siecle to the pre-WWII period in a dazzling accuracy and deep-reaching sadness.
Stately, bright Pynchon interweaves, it seems compulsory these times, fact and fiction. Yet, may his novel be affilliated to the Postmodern characteristic of historiographic metafiction, as it self-reflexively displays an "other" world as we know it, or should we go for the "change one (or more) variable and see what happens"-definition of science fiction?
A much more fundamental question: Does it matter?
Enjoy the read, and brace yourself for an eternal time.
Gleich zu Beginn wird gesagt, dass die Reise mit dem Luftschiff den Gesetzen der Thermodynamik widerspricht und das wir einem Zeitalter der Anarchie entgegenreisen. Der Schlussatz schließlich läßt sie der Gnade (grace) etngegensteuern. Nach der schweren und bleiernden Textur von "Mason and Dixon" hat der offenbar ewig junge siebzigjährige Autor einen wunderbaren Abenteuerroman vorgelegt. Jules Verne und Hergé treffen auf den größten Autor dieses und des kommenden Jahrhunderts.
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The book follows several plots from the 1893 Chicago World's Fair to post-World War I, all of which interweave and untangle through the book, some of the characters dipping in and out of the realities of the others: The Chums of Chance, aerialist boys who fly a gigantic airship. The children of the Traverse family who follow different paths of anarchism, mathematics, war, love, and hate. Lew Basnight, the lost detective who falls in with a secret society. Cyprian the depraved spy and Yashmeen the math vixen. And the Rideouts, whose activities include engineering impossible machines and just bumming around Europe.
The book is long, more than a thousand pages, but with all of those people, plots, and ideas, I think the man needed every page to write this book. True, there were parts I enjoyed more than others—with a book this long, how could that not be? I tended to relish the more fantastical stuff (e.g., the Chums of Chance drilling through the desert with a sand-invisibility ray to find a long-buried but still-inhabited city) than the stomping-around-Europe-on-the-edge-of-world-war, long stretches where the book turned grim, dirty, and a bit exhausting. The book was a lot less crazy and whimsical than "Mason & Dixon," which went to all sorts of weird places and rarely ever seemed grounded in truth, even though many of its characters were historical. While that book seemed more a celebration of the act of storytelling, this book seemed more concerned with emotion and searching.
But the searching—whether for Shambhala, or one's father's killer, or the solution to a math puzzle, or doors between dimensions, or the meaning of life, or a person's own family—Pynchon always hooked me into the searches, and sometimes I was there, reading a book with Frank by waning light to his dead father, or forwarding a photograph's light in time with Merle to see his daughter all grown up. Pynchon, too, has a way of creating little moments or ideas, just pages long, that seem to hold entire worlds, such as an Aztec girl who commands a tree filled with glowing beetles, each one named after a person she knew.
Although reading this book wasn't as revelatory as "Mason & Dixon," it both entertained and awed equally. The writing does things with ideas, characters, and words I did not know could be done; I don't know if a person could give a book like this higher praise than that.
Positive: Pynchon can write a description as well as anybody else.
On New Orleans:
"It had soon become apparent in this town that what you could see from the street was not only less than "the whole story" but in fact not even the picture on the cover. The real life of this place was secured deep inside the city blocks, behind ornate iron gates and up tiled passages that might as well've run for miles. You could hear faint strands of music, crazy stuff, banjos and bugling, trombone glissandi, pianos under the hands of whorehouse professors sounding like they came with keys between the keys. Voodoo? Voodoo was the least of it, Voodoo was just everywhere. Invisible sentinels were sure to let you know, the thickest of necks being susceptible here to monitory pricklings of the Invisible. The Forbidden. And meantime the smells of the local cuisine, cheurice sausages, gumbo, crawfish étouffé, and shrimp boiled in sassafras, proceeding from noplace you could ever see, went on scrambling what was left of your good sense. Negroes could be observed at every hand, rollicking in the street. " p. 368
"the nacreous swell of daylight. Mussel-gatherers could now be seen out in the water, which came only up to their waists, moving about like harvesters in a field. Produce boats up from the Ponte di Paglia glided by, and small boats loaded with green crabs whose rattling struggles could be heard in the dawn. " p. 253
These descriptions, as well as his sermonizing, are where the book really takes off. At points this philosophy, or history, or editorial style, can really shock and amaze:
"WE LOOK AT the world, at governments, across the spectrum, some with more freedom, some with less. And we observe that the more repressive the State is, the closer life under it resembles Death. If dying is deliverance into a condition of total non-freedom, then the State tends, in the limit, to Death... Any of the prisoners of `93 who weren't Anarchists before going into Montjuich arrived rapidly at the heart of the matter. It was like finding an old religion again, one we'd almost forgotten. The State is evil, its divine right proceeds from Hell, Hell is where we all went. Some came out of Montjuich broken, dying, without working genitals, intimidated into silence. Whips and white-hot irons are certainly effective for that. But all of us, even those who had voted and paid our taxes like good bourgeoisie, came out hating the State. I include in that obscene word the Church, the latifundios, the banks and corporations, of course." p. 372
Pynchon conveys sense of loss, of grief, at this world gone by, at the modern world of identity and status, capital and media ruling our lives. His characters are at their happiest when reunited over a meal and a bottle, sharing the past and in congress of one sort or another. He makes us question the current reality, his own imagined skein of the past, and the time in between. Like any great writer, he stirs up novel thoughts, takes us away to imaginary vistas and asks questions of our souls.
Another reviewer says this work represents an artist at his full mature powers. I could not agree more. I look forward to the rest of this novel with great relish. It is really moving for me as a piece of literature. I could not ask for more.
I found reading Against the Day pleasing in the way that I had hoped literature could still be. But what I have been most swept away by is the way this novel made me more curious and active in pursuing texts touching on elements this book's plot revolves around. My recommendations, spurred on by almost two readings of AtD are the following:
The Proud Tower - by Barbara Tuchman
Peace To End All Peace - by David Fromkin
Literature, at its best, can make us better at understanding the world we live in. In this respect, Against the Day stands on the shoulders of giants.