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Julian Meynell's Books

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The English Patient

The English Patient - Michael Ondaatje The English Patient is a booker prize winning classic that reminds me to be wary of the Booker prize. The Booker Prize seems to attract books that are written in an overly literary style and that think that they are much cleverer than they really are. That is The English Patient all over and I have a hard time believing that anyone will care about it 100 years from now.

The writing is pretty in its way, and the plot and setting are fine, but it is shoved up its own ass a little too much for me. If you strip it down there are plenty of writers that know how to put a sentence together better and its points about life and human beings and so on are just so-so. The story is fine. Four people wandering around a deserted villa is well done. The English Patients back story, which is essentially an affair driven plot is only OK. Given how many stories have been written about doomed affairs which are better, I'm surprised that people think that this one is all that.

OK book. Often written in a literary way, just to be written in a literary way and for no good reason. Sort of forgettable, but OK. Nothing annoyed me about it, but it is only alright. Good, but very far from being a masterpiece. I wish that people were not impressed by this sort of think quite so much.