The Smallest Minority on earth is the individual. Those who deny individual rights cannot claim to be defenders of minorities. - Ayn Rand
I finished Dahlgren. After I read the last page I closed it, then just looked at it for a moment. Then threw it across the room. The only thing I think I got out of it was that you should tip the soup bowl away from you as you scoop out the last few bits.
I had heard that at one time there was a t-shirt going around the SF cons that said "I Finished Dahlgren".
My brother got to the next-to-last page, figured out (finally) that it wasn't going anywhere, and did what you did.
I read "The Road" by Cormac MacCarthy and was wowed by it, after No Country for Old Men and The Border Trilogy, and then Oprah put it on her reading list - and I can't for the life of me figure out what her audience thought of it, and I am almost positive she never read it - but I could be wrong. It has more value than her honorable mention...
I had a strange experience with respect to Oprah's reading list.
The other month, someone shared a NetFlix copy of Cry, the Beloved Country with us. (The more recent version starring James Earl Jones, not the 1951 version...why is Hollywood always re-making old stuff?)
Anyway, the movie was a compelling look at just-before-apartheid South Africa, and the dealings between the poor black folk the few, rich, European-descended white folk.
So I got a copy of the book from the local library--and was shocked to see a sticker on the cover stating it was from Oprah's book club list!
Oprah's selection didn't ruin the book. It is understandable in that the writing was definitely edging towards the poetical rather than the plainly-descriptive. Also, the themes of racism and poverty would have been interesting to Oprah; though the situation would have been the same if the indigenous tribes on the failing farmland had been white and if the cultured, foreign-derived minority who ran the mining-boom-town had been black.
General Whitehall is a good choice. Might be fun to get him in the same room as Drake's Lt. Leary and Stephenson's Enoch Root.
"A mischievous fairy comes and says that you must choose one book that you will reread once a year for the rest of your life (you can read other books as well). Which book would you pick?"
LOL. "The Cat In The Hat" :D
"why is Hollywood always re-making old stuff?"
It saves writers from the horror of actually needing talent to make a living.
The Money Guys like the idea of minimizing risk by backing something already proven popular once.
It saves producers/directors the pain of actually having to read and understand new stuff that might require some actual intellectual effort. It feeds their delusions of granduer that they are fit to shine the shoes of the ones that came before them.
It gives the current pathetic crop of actors the illusion that they could have actually gotten that role in the original, instead of bussing the tables of real talent in the studio cafeteria.
Cranky? Cynical? Me?