As I Lay Dying, Paperback Book
4 out of 5 (1 rating)


The death and burial of Addie Bundren is told by members of her family, as they cart the coffin to Jefferson, Mississippi, to bury her among her people. And as the intense desires, fears and rivalries of the family are revealed in the vernacular of the Deep South, Faulkner presents a portrait of extraordinary power - as epic as the Old Testament, as American as Huckleberry Finn.


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The 1949 Nobel Prize for literature winner wrote this novel in 6 weeks and it was published in 1930. It's written in "stream of consciousness" style by 15 different narators. Its dark and depressing and emotionally thick, but well worth pulling yourself through. What struck me is Faulkners ability to make you sincerely attached to the characters, even though they aren't so likeable and there are many of them. Sometimes you find yourself thinking "He wouldn't have said that!" But maybe he would, maybe Darl, a poor, young, uneducated country boy, really would use the word soporific and think so philosophically about time and space ("It is as though the space between us were time: an irrevocable quality. It is as though time, no longer running straight before us in a diminishing line, now runs parallel between us like a looping string, the distance being the doubling accretion of the thread and not the interval between." Other reviewers have hated this, thinking that it is so out of character, that it is the authors uncontrollable urge to write so poetically. But I like to think it's the whole "you can't judge a book by it's cover" thing. I love that there are these wonderful characters who challenge your first judgement of them.

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