There is Potential. I Don't Know What it is Yet

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If On A Winter's Night A Traveler, by Italo Calvino is certainly an adventure to read and something that my mind has to remain entirely focused on while I'm reading because I might miss an entire idea or a scene change.  

"I am looking from the outside at the life of an ordinary evening in an ordinary little city, and I realize I am cut off from the ordinary evenings for God knows how long, and I think of thousands of cities like this, of hundreds of thousands of lighted places where at this hour people allow the evenings darkness to descend and have none of the thoughts in their head that I have in mine; maybe they have other thoughts that aren't at all enviable but at this moment I would be willing to trade with any one of them," (Calvino, 17).

There is something to be said for a text that is telling a story but telling it to the reader like it's face-to-face.  With the interruptions and everything.  It seemed to take a while for Calvino to even get to a beginning of the story.  It felt as though he kept talking in ciricle's to avoid telling the rest, which makes me nervous for the rest of the book.  As I read on I saw that he made it a point to tell the reader about the obvious repeated pages and such; I like his honesty.

Fortunately, it is easy reading, but I feel very distracted when I read it; and not by outside distractions, but by his ability to distract me from the actual story.  Then I thought he must be doing that on purpose because he knows thats how it might make people feel, so maybe that is the actual point of the story.  

He writes as though I already know about his life and that is a bit confusing at times.  Then again, I am familiar with this style of writing because it is the way I write sometimes.  I would never write this way with the intention of it being a story read by lots of people but I write that way for me; sometimes in my journal, sometimes in class.  Overall, I understand that he rides these trains and I understand that there is a woman involved, but so far it would be hard for me to explain what this story (if you could call it that) is actually about.  Then again that might be the idea.  I won't know until I read on!


1 Comments

Erica Gearhart said:

I was nervous while I was reading too, Megan. I actually felt uncomfortable when he was writing how we should be sitting. I almost felt like I had to do what he was saying. It is also a weird book because, like you said, he seems to be talking to us face to face, but then he is telling me that I have a crush on the girl in the bookshop. I really thought he was doing a great job of this until I read this part. Because he identifies genders, he limits his abilities a little bit, especially because it is so convincing and not imaginative like other books I have read. Despite this, I think he does a really great job of invoking emotion in the reader.

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