Saturday, May 23, 2015

Magnificent Obsession - Lloyd C. Douglas (Spoilers?)

This was yet another random Library Sale book that seemed interesting at the time, but then took up residence on Mount TBR until I made it a part of this year's Back to the Classics Challenge. I knew nothing at all about it, and was surprised to discover that not only was this book hugely popular in its day, it inspired at least 2 filmed versions (that I have obviously never seen).

I have to say that this book can best be described in modern parlance as a cross between "The Secret" and "Pay It Forward," combined with a conventional fictional love story, which naturally includes plenty of silly misunderstandings that contrive to keep the would-be lovers apart so as to further the story along, topped by a pinch of religion for good measure. To be fair the religious parts were somewhat interesting, as they didn't dwell on particulars but seemed to convey the message that people should do good works anonymously/without expectation of reward, and if they truly do that, a higher power will reward them. This idea, straight out of 1929, is a bit refreshing in this day and age of screamers who thump holy books and seem to not only go out of their way to avoid doing anything that could remotely be considered a good work, but to actively do bad things and gloat about them.

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