Friday 19 June 2009
Ffack you, Jasper!
I think I'm about to lose some friends here. As far as I can tell, everyone loves Jasper Fforde's The Eyre Affair. It's considered to be one of those la-la-la, light, happy, and hilarious books that no one could possibly not like because it's the perfect beach read, but a beach read for people who really like books, so that much more of a perfect beach read. An uber-beach read for nerds who don't want to slum it too much, even when on vay-cay.
Well, I suppose it's these things but it's also (much more) full of a hell of a lot of filler (really, what was the point of all that dodo stuff?), mediocre writing (at best), a knowledge of classic literature that seems like it may well have been gathered entirely from the Wikipedia, and an embarrassingly ham-fisted handling of one seriously contrived plot.
Or, to put it another way: I like the idea of a world where the boundaries between literature and reality are blurred and literature has a living significance in everyone's lives. The problem is, I don't think Fforde is very smart; I wish someone with a much higher IQ had written this book or something like it.
And because Fforde ain't so ffriggin' smart, The Eyre Affair reads to me like the offspring of a homeless man's Woody Allen short story and a Ritalin-inspired Artemis Fowl novel. (The latter being a problem because the Artemis Fowl books are for kids and they're about a bazillion times cleverer than this (which is for adults), and the former being a problem because Woody Allen is funny, but he's not unapproachably funny; he shouldn't constitute an unreachable standard. Know what'm sayin'?)
So, yeah, unimpressed, both because this book sucked and because Ffoolish Jasper the buffle-headed book-ffucker probably has more money than Gawd at this point and is therefore an example to other young semi-literates who think (rightly!) that if they write some crap they might well get a huge following anyway.
There. Rant over. Now, back to good books and happier times.