Thursday, July 7, 2011

Brighton Rock: A Review.

     Huh.  I guess I just didn't get it.  I was searching for an image of the cover to put up along with this review and I stumbled upon the Wikepedia page and an IMdB page, and a bunch of other pages dedicated to this book and the subsequent films.  It seems people love this book, the story, just about everything about it.  And I'm not trying to say they're all wrong, but I'm not quite in the same camp.
     Brighton Rock by Graham Greene is a character profile.  It was published in 1938 and I think it was probably a much more effective tale back then.  I was drawn in my Graham Greene's style, by his prose.  He indeed knows how to turn a phrase and I would find myself getting lovingly lost in the language.  I just wasn't overly interested in the story.
     It took me too long to read.  It's not a long book, but I kept putting it down and walking away.  I was determined to finish it, but I never carved out the time to do so and often I would drift off while reading.  This isn't entirely the book's fault, but it's also not *not* the book's fault, you know?  I was also oddly distracted by the use of the single quotation mark.  It shouldn't bother me, but it did. 
     My general opinion was that it had unsympathetic characters but it picked up at the end.  According to people a lot smarter than I, I'm wrong.  Except I'm not wrong, that's what it's like. 
     It's a good book.  It is.  But I didn't think it was great and I really wanted it to be great.  I am intrigued enough to watch the films, however, if only to see what the adaptations pulled out of it.  Graham Green himself co-wrote the screenplay for the first film adaptation.  Perhaps he highlighted the salient points.  Also, perhaps a large part of the subtext was too religion heavy for me to really get, or care about.  Oh, you're worried about burning in hell forever because you married a murderer or something?  Huh.  Sure.  It's just a little lost on me. 

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