Sinking In

I recently read a book that I didn't much like. I do this often (perhaps more often than I should). Such is the risk I run give that I choose many of books I read at random (see my old By Its Cover reviews). So I feel that finishing is what I owe the author. It's also a kind of punishment myself- should the pick turn out sour- for not having a better plan for attacking the library stacks.

My reading criteria for completion:

  • If I get past halfway, I usually finish the book.
  • If I have an outlandish goal set on Goodreads (it's 75 this year, I'm almost halfway done) and whether I'm behind schedule or not... I usually finish the book.
  • If I've added the book to my Goodreads' currently reading shelf, I usually finish the book.
  • If someone recommended the book to me, I usually finish the book (though if it's part of a series I may not continue with the series).
The writing has to be really poor, the characters completely unlikeable (fiction) and the story completely uninteresting (both fiction and non-) for me to quit. Or I have to be against the library limit on renewals.

The main character in The Body Artist by Don DeLillo is a sort of yogi/contortionist performance artist. Between DeLillo's disjointed writing style and the oddness of the story (there's a suicide, a random elf man, poor conversation), I didn't connect with the book. But I find myself thinking about the artist character. Maybe it's more thinking a little like her. I find myself stretching more and thinking inwardly. I couldn't attempt the poses she did (or imagined she did). But I can move and feel and see and I'm reminded what an amazing thing a body is.

I didn't like the book. But it has had an effect, left ripples, echoes. I like when a book, movie, piece of art, does that.

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