Saturday, November 29, 2014

The Rainbow - D.H. Lawrence

Found this book when I needed one last read to complete the Color-Coded Reading Challenge. I had enjoyed Lady Chatterly's Lover, so I figured this was a good bet. In the end, I was half-right: I enjoyed half of the book quite a bit, but the other "half" was made up of rambling and belaboring the point. I didn't remember that being the case in Lady Chatterly; but maybe it's deliberate in this book, as this book spans several generations of the same family. Maybe Lawrence is attempting to show, both through the story as well as the actual writing, how things repeat through generations even as things change. One word that repeats over and over is "fecund" or a variation (most often "fecundity"). In the end this word became associated with the physical effects of childbirth and the rearing of an infant in my mind and it started to seem gross to me.

Having now read 2 books by Lawrence, it seems that a common theme is the friction between the everyday/mechanical world and the world of the senses/nature. There is also some inherent conflict in relationships, where the feelings of "love" and/or "infatuation" wax and wane, sometimes in the span of a few hours. This is something I have criticized Tolstoy for doing, because for some reason it bothers me - but maybe that's just because I'm not a complex enough being to appreciate a thought process that is more subtle than my own. Who knows.

As always, I'd love to discuss this book and its themes (both obvious and much less so) in a college/university type class. Or in the comments, if you'd care to leave one! :-)

And with this book, I bid a fond farewell to the Color-Coded Reading Challenge, hosted by Bev at My Reader's Block. I had a wonderful time reading books I may not have otherwise encountered for this challenge, as per usual. I'm looking forward to signing up for the 2015 version (will probably do this in December). Bev also has links to some other interesting looking 2015 challenges that I should ignore and NOT join, but I will take a look at my TBR shelves and see if I can't somehow justify joining them.  Check out her blog and see which challenges you would like to tackle next year!

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