characters ´ eBook or Kindle ePUB º Thomas PynchonHat Slothrop could be a reversal of HumbertTo put it bluntly these are Vera s words not mine Humbert European in origin fucks his way around the New World or lessSlothrop on the other hand American to his bootstraps fucks his way around the Old WorldI admire the way you even so than Slothrop carried off Bianca It is some of the most delicious erotic writing I have readBianca echoes Dolores nicely Even the sound of her nameBi an ca The way it rolls off your tongue it reminds me of forgive me for citing myself Lo lee taIt s also close enough to the German acronym BNK which even a faint hearted German reader or patient would appreciate stands for the Bundesverband Niedergelassener Kardiologen cross my heart and hope not to dieVera was the first to detect how you reversed the reader s response to this relationshipHumbert knew damned well how old Lolita was It was crucial to his enterpriseOn the other hand Slothrop believed Bianca was a minor of barely 11 or 12 but when you work through the arithmetic of your puzzle you realise that in reality and therefore fiction she was 16 or was it 17 and conseuently of ageSo what Slothrop did was legitimate but what the reader who was as yet naware of this detail did was notIn Lolita I allowed readers to believe they were jurors with a legitimate interest in the proceedings whereas in Gravity s Rainbow they are complicit in a crime that the protagonist did not actually commitThe reader s voyeurism comes at a cost at least metaphoricallyOnly time will tell whether America and the world is ready to be confronted with their culpabilityEven if they are not I hope your novel receives the acclaim it deservesSo well done Tom Richard would have been proudI would have been proud to call you my pupil too Pupil 2 if only you had enrolled in one of my classesPerhaps you learned and better from my exampleIn the hope that you might continue to do so I have asked my Publisher to send you a copy of my Strong OpinionsI hope you enjoy reading them as much as I enjoyed expressing themYours with all my admiration V Slothropod De Feets Cephalopod Dutch Girl Almost Pops Her ClogsSlothrop octopusAnd Katje BorgesiusWe were meant to meetThe Thoughts of An Erotic ClausewitzFuck Death Fuck RocketsSays Erotic ClausewitzMake Love Fuck the WarJim Carroll Watches the Earth RecedeHow can I propelMy missile gainst the pull ofWicked GravitySlothrop s Dewy GlansSlothrop s cock n croppedSlots into sweet spot then spentFlops soft in wet spotSummit MeetingWho knows what worldly wisdom I might findWhen I discover myself at the peak Gravity defiant all nickels spentTrying to work out what it could have meantAnd you re already there reposed asleepYour trousers down and crimson phallus bentAnd scattered on the snow are streaksOf your rocket powered ejaculateThat have fallen moist arc like to the earthStill rainbow coloured and immaculateSo I read 200 sullen words worthOf the dry wit and onanistic mirthThat appeal so much to the daisy chainOf acolytes standing at your rearAs one who s sually come beforeThey call you a poet and a seerIt s sad we only see your back sideThough we re the ones forever left behindBy all your avant garde sorcery andThe flaccid disuisitions of your mindSoundtrackNick Cave and the Bad Seeds Babe You Turn Me Onhttpwwwyoutubecomwatchv153eVr ITS ABOUT A SECRET ROCKET PROJECT IN WW II BUT I THINK SOME OF IT IS A DREAM BECAUSE IT DOESNT MAKE SENSE THE AUTHOR IS VERY CLEVER I know history is rarely kind to harsh criticisms about super nebulous or difficult authors but dig this This book is horrible After reading The Crying of Lot 49 Slow Learner and now this I m convinced that Thomas Pynchon is a hack and the reason we don t hear from him is because he has nothing to say and knows that if we gave him a microphone and fifteen minutes he d be found out90% of the people who pick p this novel won t finish it and 90% of those who do won t like it But 100% of them will pretend they do because Pynchon has the rare reputation of being one of those authors you have to read We re all convinced Pynchon is the possessor of some private hidden genius that buried somewhere between the rambling nonsensical plot and the long winded super cerebral jargon riddled diatribes on the Rocket and the sexual implications of its trajectory and its relation to the symphonic form is a message of some importBut for all the hype someone please point to a passage in this novel that overreaches or couldn t be approximated by the efforts of anyone else who lived a super reclusive hermetic lifestyle owned a library card and was given
NEARLY A DECADE THE LENGTH OFa decade the length of between the publication of this novel and the author s previous one and around 900 pages to do it inSeriously though don t read this book Aside from the small flutter of accomplishment I feel at actually finishing it I ve found it to be little than a super frustrating and ltimately hateful reading experience It took three months but I finally pinned this sucker down to the count of ten Three months is kinda perfect if you think about it though That s my typical honeymoon period in most relationships the enthusiastic I can still than tolerate you part so great timing yeah Sure I cheated on him on about 15 separate occasions in that time frame but hell nobody s perfect The library card in my wallet is like a condom just begging to be Chillwater Cove usedSo yeah I can now say I ve read this book Oh and you know what else So Fucking What What Pynchon has created here is like a goddamned kaleidoscope every time you look in you re going to see something else It will give itp and give it p and then beg
for some All it takes is a minor flip of the wrist and BOOM An al THIS BOOKsome All it takes is a minor flip of the wrist and BOOM An al THIS BOOK ABOUT A MAN IN WW2 HE GETS ERECTIONS You know that very brief moment after you wake p in the morning That moment when you re not sleeping but you re not yet awake You kind of know what s going but you re not fully aware You re in conciousness limbo When you read Gravity s Rainbow you fall into this conciousness limbo You read the words on the page but they don t all make sense You re confused you don t know what s going on but you love it You re floating through this syntactical Pandora s Box fully The Story of Charlottes Web unaware of your surroundings not wanting to stop reading so you just read and read this 900 page page tome never wanting to stop And then it ends And you want to start again Because you know that this is the greatest novel ever written And you ll never read anything like it ever again I don t know why exactly you folks out there read or why you feel compelled to then seek out a community in which you might share your thoughts impressions reactions etc about the books you ve read But me myself I read for many reasons among them the opportunity to transcend the narrow window of my own point of view the chance to learn by a leap however minimally over the subjective walls of my own stupid existence also and especially to inhabit for a few moments the warm pulse of aesthetic bliss and recognition that waves over me whenever a certain sentence or passage hits just so at a basic level to increase my appreciation andnderstanding of Life and those artists and thinkers out there striving to contribute to the meaning of human experience those attempting to bring some beauty or order into the entropic Christian Charm School Leader Guide universe and make a little sense out of this mess of a reality we re stuck in for the duration And if they can t find order or beauty at least to make the muck sing out in some delightful way There is also that moment where somethingnnameable but now somehow named clicks into place while reading and something akin to deja vu blooms inside the This is the proper expression of the thing I ve always had in mind but have never been able to express so rightly The closest thing I get to what is typically described as a feeling of spirituality I who sincerely believe I do not experience spirituality in any degree are these moments when I come Hey Diddle Diddle Leveled Text upon this expression of something intensely meaningful and resonant with me and my personal experiences outside of myself encountering something that seems of me but not by me these are elusive moments rare but when they occur I feel struck by something close to what Nabokov wrote about his experience of Love When that slow motion silent explosion of love takes place in menfolding its melting fringes and overwhelming me with the sense of something much vaster much enduring and powerful than the accumulation of matter or energy in any imaginable cosmos then my mind cannot but pinch itself to see if it is really awake I have to make a rapid inventory of the niverse just as a man in a dream tries to condone the absurdity of his position by making sure he is dreaming I have to have all space and all time participate in my emotion in my mortal love so that the edge of its mortality is taken off thus helping me to fight the
utter degradation ridicule and horror of having developed an infinity of sensation anddegradation ridicule and horror of having developed an infinity of sensation and within a finite existence Which is why of course I then tend to seek out a community with which to share my emotion my experience to know that others too might be aware that such experiences are not only possible but are out there for s somewhere waiting to be found hidden among the vast mundane plowing of life and the comforting idea that others have generously spent many of their precious hours alive in creating works of art that contain their own such revelations because they The Mangrove Tree understand the importance of keeping this type of transmission alive through history that this type ofncovering and finding is an essential component of being human CUE SONG Take a look It s in a book A reading rainbow So here I am putting it out there to this broad community of Good Readers wanting to tell you Gravity s Rainbow for me was one such experience one such finding a book I ve been waiting for all my reading life And with it and my readings of Mason Dixon and Against The Day I am certain of my notion that Pynchon is the peak of American postmodernism alongside the works of William Gaddis that these two have set the goal for what the encyclopedic novel might accomplish on this side of the Atlantic in this American English I consider having the opportunity to read both Gravity s Rainbow and Gaddis J R in the same year a great privilegeBut Pynchon s book itself is practically impossible to review impossible to summarize or condense worthless to categorize or constrain by exegesis because of all it contains the enormity of what it holds within its pages the hundreds of characters and mad proliferation of ideas and allusions all those words hundreds of thousands of words that somehow leave so much nsaid but nsaid in perfect ways left to drift into audience dreams because it projects countless tentacles wrapping its world and reaching out into space time some of which return full of Story and the Known to feed the octopus body center of narrative and some which purposefully throw Story and the Known out into the careening forces of the expanding Understanding Yandere Lovers universe to be forevernresolved and scattered to cosmic coldness and star distances because of the density of the fragmentation of the world it has created but which is no fragmented than any human consciousness encountering existence on any given day So allow me only to give you a small cenotaph or a monument an obelisk to the impossible review of Gravity s Rainbow Like a great movie all of its themes are present in each scene and yet the individual occurrences and set pieces here seem infinitely varied and inexhaustible It is the macro microcosm Kings of Paradise (Ash and Sand unity of the mandala I believe at a certain level it contains the elemental forces of existence the things that make Time rotate Jackson but that are only allowed to be seen by Pynchon writing around them he knows that naming would fix them and so render them invisible These are parallax visions The explosionimplosion the ascentdescent of a rocket or the archangels or a human destiny the fatal arc of gravity s pull on an accelerating object as if it ever had a choice of the path it would take the dialectic the synthesis of opposites the white and the black the yin the yang and the Tarot tower with a king in mid fall the parabola path of e August 2020 Rereading this now in my Pulitzerest Wow as amazingly confusing as the first time aroundThis is of course the Pynchon pinnacle the summit of his fame the cornerstone of his work So much so that he fell. A cruel dark parody of what God sent Noah to symbolize his promise never to destroy humanity again Soon Tyrone is on the run from legions of bizarre enemies through the phantasmagoric horrors of Germany Gravity's Rainbow however doesn't follow such a standard plot; one must have faith that each manic episode is connected with the great plot to blow Brothers up the. Prologue A screaming comes across the sky It has happened before but there is nothing to compare it to nowGenesisIn the beginning was the earth and above the earth was the sky The earth consisted of land and water The sky consisted of air the moon the sun and the stars in the heavensThe land consisted of rock Water was everywhere but still preciousThe sky was light by day and dark by night By day the light came from the sun and sometimes the moon At night a lesser light came from the stars and the moonOn the land things were still but then they began to change The sun made rock hot by day and the night made it cold and the rock became stone and the stone soon became soilThe Creation of LifeIn time the soil and the water came together with the air and the sunlight to form lifeThe life was green and did cling to the soilThe air and the heavens were the realm of gravityEverything on earth was made to fall and to disperse and to dissipate as time goes by To rise was to challenge the laws of nature Nothing could rise except one thing invisibly vaporsWater mixed with the heat of the sun and became a vapor and the vapor ascended to the sky and became clouds At night and sometimes by day the clouds became rain and the rain fell and spilled water onto the earthSome water remained on the land in rivers and streams and lakes Other water sliding and falling and dropping across the land found its way to the oceans The Life of FruitIn time life conspired to defy gravity little by littleLife combined with the soil and the water and the air and the light to make trees and shrubs some bearing bananas or mangoes or pawpaws and these plants reached skyward to the sunBut these plants could not be severed from the soil because their roots sought nourishment there Any plant severed from the soil would fall to the earth obedient to gravityIn time many plants were severed from the earth and covered by soil and water and became hard and part of the rock Beneath the surface of the earth dead plants formed coal and sometimes oil and gasThe Origin of ManAfter much time other forms of life were born including animals that did grow heads and arms and legs and tails and eat the plantsSome animals became humans some male some female all of whom wished to walk on two legs and become higher than other animals and plantsMen were not always bigger and stronger than other animals and so sought refuge in holes in the ground and cavesThe caves were darker than night and men grew frightened of the dark not knowing what was out therentil they discovered fire which they sed for light and heatSometimes men sed fire to warm the flesh of other beasts and they grew strongerLife was good and men tended to live within and surrounded by nature as oneMan on the MoveMen began to move across the earth in search of food and learned how to construct homes of rock and stone and bricks made of soil and waterTheir homes grew taller than trees and animals and began to defy gravityThen men learned how to make machines that could move across the land and water at speeds faster than men or horses could walk or runAnd they consumed coal and oil and gas so that they were not dependent on horse powerMan Turns the Power Switch OnMen learned how to make electricity and switches that would turn the power on and offMen made glass bulbs that turned darkness into lightMen had finally become enlightenedMen looked at the sky for beauty and meaning and portents of the future They wondered what lived in the heavens and whether they had been created by godsThey made drawings and pictures of what surrounded them One day they would make photographs and moving pictures and shiny silver discsMen observed what occurred in nature and over a great duration started to learn about cause and effectMan Dominates HimselfThen men created gods in their own image They invented religions and superstitions and sometimes it was difficult to tell them apart men and their gods religions and superstitionsMen sed their religions to explain what they could and couldn t doThen they created churches and holy men and scriptures to dictate to them what they must and must not do and the holy men and their gods punished them if they "DID NOT DO WHAT THEY MUST "not do what they must or did what they must not do Man Discovers Matters of Life and DeathMen observed decay and destruction and death around them and wondered whether they too would die one dayMen didn t like this prospect and decided that they alone amongst the plants and animals had a soul and after death would live in eternityExcept that if they disobeyed the commandments of their holy men and gods and scriptures they would be punished by eternal damnation and made to live in hell Which was not meant to be a good thingSome scientists conducted experiments and tests on dogs and other animals and learned how they were governed by stimulus and responseMen wondered whether their souls and their capacity for reason elevated them above the animalsThey did not recognise that even with their gods men would do evil things to each other that animals would never doMan Engages in Some Empire State BuildingMen built their homes in cities and formed nations They conuered other cities and nations and established empiresThey established workforces and armiesThey organised men and their possessions into rows and columns and they made men and women wear niforms so that they
might look and think and do alikeThey developed systems to punish those who would dissentlook and think and do alikeThey developed systems to punish those who would dissent they La muralla verde used force to hold their empires togetherThey looked downpon any man or woman who would not conform or wear a The New Competition uniformThose that they did not incarcerate or hang or inject with life sapping solutions or electricity they cast off into the wilderness where they would disperse or die of thirstWe Men are ScientistsSo men acuired knowledge and wisdom and accumulated science and technology beyond the wildest dreams of their predecessorsThey converted their knowledge and wisdom into zeroes and ones so that they might store them on silver discsSome men wondered whether there was to life than zeroes and ones and was there anything beyond zero or between zero and one and they were scornedMan Defies GravitySlowly man s dreams became ambitiousSome men dreamed about how they might fly like a bird and one day men learned how to make flying machinesMen did not always live happily with other men and they made tools and machines that would maim and kill their enemiesMensed their aeroplanes to drop bombs on other men and the planes and the bombs grew bigger and the maiming and the killing grew widespread and efficientAt the same time men learned how to make bigger and taller buildings that reached higher and appeared to touch the skyMany men lived and worked in these skyscrapersIn Case of WarThen there were two wars between many nations of the worldIn the first war many men died in trenches dug into the soil of their farmsIn the second war it was not necessary to get into a trench to die Many people died in their homes and their buildings It was easier to kill Domestic Slavery Considered as a Scriptural Institution by Francis Wayland and Richard Fuller uickly in the cities that housed large numbers of peopleMen made new bombs that were meant to end the wars but when they continued men invented rockets that could maim and kill even greater numbers of peopleSome rockets made a sound that warned people that they were comingIf you heard the sound you might be able to escape to safetyWhen they did not end the war scientists invented and better ways to kill and better people They built rockets that made no noise and could kill you before you heard them comingThey were the perfect machinery of death because nowhere was safe and you could not escape them These rockets defied both gravity and the imaginationWhile nobody had been looking or thinking about it man s buildings and vehicles and aeroplanes and rockets and bombs had made the earth dark againA Voice in the WildernessWell maybe not nobody A man called Slothrop had been watchingEvery time a rocket was launched Slothrop was blessed with a hard on an erectionHe would look at the rockets and he would be turned offAt the same time he would look at the rockets and he would be turned onSlothrop s hard on was a hard one for the scientists to explainWhat the FuckSomewhere in Europe scientists were erecting buildings platforms rockets that could bring death to people like SlothropSlothrop suspected that the bestse of an erection was not to build an edifice but to fill an orificeSlothrop wondered why had men become obsessed by Death when they should have been preoccupied with LifeSurely there is no life without sex no progress without congress no creation without procreation Make love fuck the war Fuck war fuck each other How do you convince everybody else that this is the solution Fucked if I know sez SlothropThe Prophet DebunkedSlothrop is cast out of the mainstream and sets out across Europe in pursuit of love sex and rockets and those who would launch any one or of them at himStill even euipped with his hard on Slothrop prefers bananas to buildings and rockets he is bent but never straightHe is the Mini Habits for Weight Loss: Stop Dieting. Form New Habits. Change Your Lifestyle Without Suffering. ultimate non conformist hedonist and sybarite who gives pleasure to himself and to many women Katje Margherita Bianca three of the foremost amongst themSlothrop s skepticism and excess threaten the System Religion and Culture He is an anarchist Counter Force to Binary Code Mono theism Uniformity and Over the Counter Culture He is thenwitting counter cultural Prophet who threatens the methodical ordered and conformist backbone of Mainstream Society He is a spanner in the works He is a virus that must be eliminated Like Trotsky he is a Prophet that must be nettedThey the powers that be with their niforms and their weapons and their switches chase Slothrop through Europe but
HE REMAINS FREEMISANSLOTHROPYIN TIME PEOPLE CAMEremains freeMisanslothropyIn time people came doubt whether Slothrop ever actually existed at allSome would ask Slothrop What kind of name for a prophet is that Still They did not stop their pursuit even when They were certain that he must be dead The price of liberty is eternal vigilanceIf you can t see him or hear him deprive him of oxygen Wipe out his disciples Stifle his message Prevent it from reaching any children If the medium is the message remove his medium That way the prophet and his prophecy will cease to exist Revelations What RevelationsWas Slothrop a fabrication A ghost in the machine A shadow in the light of day A figment of someone s imagination A fiction Just a character in a novel Just a story in a holy bookAs Slothrop would say I m fucked if I know Outside the novel the world continues as before only so Buildings reach higher Rockets and aeroplanes fly further Wars drone on Civilians die Men line p in rows and columns and The Oswald Reflection uniforms Power perpetuates itself eternally Evil perpetrates itself on people via people Darkness masuerades as light The sky is silent We can no longer hear the screaming It s all theatre even within our homesGroup ReadI re read this as part of a group read started by Stephen M NotesI kept my reading notes in My Writings Letter from Vlad the Impaler of Butterflies Dated April 1973Dear TomVera and I very much appreciated your gift of a signed first edition of your novelIt actually caused a little friction in the Nabokov householdI don t mean to bengrateful or vulgar but we both wished you had given The Rabbit Who Wants to Go to Harvard us one copy each I guess we could purchase one but we were too keen to read itNaturally I started it first immediately it arrived butickly found I couldn t put it downThe reason being that every time I did Vera picked it Quantum (Captain Chase up and commenced reading Initially our respective lepidopteran bookmarks wereite far apart but when she passed my place she asserted her right to be the dominant reader and I had to wait Introduction to Mythology until she had devoured the entire offering which she did by the time of Maundy ThursdayFortunately this left me Easter to finish it so we were able to compare notes by Easter Monday appropriately with a sense of renewed faith in literatureI am convinced Gravity s Rainbow is one of the finest works of modern fictionIt is very much an artistic and logical extension of V which as you know we also enjoyed greatlyIf your first novel was a pursuit of V then Gravity s Rainbow is a pursuit of V tooIn fact it is a pursuit of both V1 and V2Vera was bold enough to suggest that V1 and V2 might connote Vlad and Vera though we werenable to reach consensus on who might be noisy and who might be silent We did however hypothesise Tyrone Slothrop a GI in London in 1944 has a big problem Whenever he gets an erection a Blitz bomb hits Slothrop gets excited and then as Thomas Pynchon puts it in his sinister insinuatingly sibilant opening sentence a screaming comes across the sky heralding an angel of death a V 2 rocket The novel's title Gravity's Rainbow refers to the rocket's vapor arc. Silent for about 14 years after writing it leading me to wonder if DeLillo was spoofing him in Mao II It is an amazing book and the first Pynchon I ever read It is a rude introduction to his style though as it is thoroughly post modern in narration in the manipulation of time and reality and the proliferation of characters There are moments of pure genius but also of repulsion leading him to lose the Pulitzer the year it was published but even those moments are perfectly What is the real nature of control From the first sentence of Pynchon s National Book Award winning novel Gravity s Rainbow the Reader is transplanted into a threatening world where death strikes first the cause second It is a world of frightening realism and comic absurdity all fueled through drug induced hallucinations paranoid ramblings and psychological investigations that is not all that nlike our own reality once you remove yourself to view it from afar as if it were some painting in a gallery This is the Zone and Pynchon is your field guide through the wasteland of paranoids preterits and pornographers The novel is stylistically staggering and so carefully researched that the line between fact and fiction blurs and is not always easy to deduce It is carefully plotted out with extreme precision aligning the events with actual weather detail from the days played out and in keeping with a metaphoric representation of the zodiac signs through the passing months While this novel can be demanding it is also extremely rewarding for those who make it through this wild rocket ride of literature A first time Reader should be cautioned that Part 1 of this mammoth text is exceedingly difficult Pynchon seemingly takes great joy in pummeling the Reader with a labyrinthine structure of characters and plot lines each accruing through dramatic left turns in the narrative The effect is pure disorientation obfuscation and outright frustration It feels just like spinning plates It is in a sense Pynchon s boot camp for the real war awaiting across minefields of prose it is where he must break you down and reconstruct you as he sees fit While the Reader must keep their head down and gut through soaking p as much of the swirling stories as they can Pynchon lays out the groundwork for the larger themes to come Many of the ideas expressed early on won t seem particularly meaningful but by the end of the novel the Reader will realize it was all right there in their faces from the start As characters will come and go like ghosts with only minimal dimension and reference to them the Reader will begin to realize that the coming tribulations are not there for the growth of the characters but for the Reader themselves The Reader must come out the other side changed in order for the novel to be a success They must let go of their notions of story and plot for Pynchon views even the smallest plot structure as comfort they must let go give in and submit to Pynchon He demands it and he will fire off heady diatribes against your intellect with philosophy theology conspiracies and actual rocket science The novel takes off running once the gun sounds the start of Part 2 when dropped from foggy London town the Reader finds themselves in the Zone Early on is a discussion of Pointsman and Mexico Pointsman being crafted as the ltimate embodiment of Pavlov s cause and effect conditioning and Mexico being considered as the Antipointsman The young statistician is devoted to number and method not table rapping or wishful thinking But in the domain of zero to one not something to something Pointsman can only possess the zero and the one He cannot like Mexico survive anyplace in between to Mexico belongs the domain between zero and one the middle Pointsman has excluded from his persuasion the probabilities Much of this novel deals with these two major perspectives Pynchon often establishes structure the Pointsman method merely to deconstruct it and show the faults that lie within By showing two specific points in this instance excluding those inbetween points Pynchon is able to demonstrate moments of symmetry which he will then reverse Normally a rocket would be heard before it explodes in a ball of death but with the V2 now we have the death before sound reversals also play a large key to the novel from the count down before a launch to hypnotic imagery of English explorers sailing backwards to home These two specific points are also expressed as binary differences such as black and white life and death good and evil preterition and the chosen few These binaries are clear cut sides direct opposites of forces in keeping with the theory of entropy which rules the novel sides that we clamor to reach in order to have a firm ground to stand on and a cut and dry vision of who is friend and who is foe But Mexico and Pynchon rejects these binaries Mexico acknowledges the space between zero and one which is a wild lawless no man s land recall the McCarthy esk western vision of Slothrops where there is one of everything a endlessly compounding one that creates an asymptote never actually reaching 1 where everything and anything is possible It is a place dream than reality and the hallucinogenic nature of Pynchon s spiraling prose and plots do well to express the ambiguities inherent in such a Zone However the novel never fully subscribes to one theory and can be interpreted as a cautionary tale for those who wander into this territory Plot laws and binaries are structures that keep our minds at ease and provide comfort and safety so when we enter into the infinite freedom of the decimal we open ourselves to forces that may scatter s kill Laird of Shadows (MacDougall Legacy Book 1) us and rubs out into oblivion Pynchon himself will try to scatter and thwart the Reader in conseuence of stepping into his Zone He acknowledges you are in his territory and will speak as he chooses often with what seems an intention of belittling your own intelligence He only occasionally makes concessions to the reader when he realizes at least a slight bridge must be made in setting a scene such as saying you will want cause and effect All right which considering the rejection of such an idea in this novel serves to mock the reader for scrambling to grasp the reassuring ledge of the pool in this deep end he has thrown Chaucer's Canterbury Tales - Selected: An Interlinear Translation us To swallow this novel on a first read a reader must attack it somewhat like middle school mathematical story problems find the important information in the bloated paragraph divide and conuer There is a plethora of information to choose from as he will offer a vast variety of the same symbols and metaphors the S for example showsp as the SS the shape of the bomb factory tunnels people spooning the symbol for entropy etc There is a deathlife metaphor on practically every page Yet Pynchon seems hell bent on keeping you on your toes and disoriented
He will allow the Reader to slide into a groove of strong forward velocity and then deliver a scenewill allow the Reader to slide into a groove of strong forward velocity and then deliver a scene grotesuely funny or vilely disgusting to shock the readers mind and scatter their thoughts and perceptions from decoding this vast network of ideas and then tries to evade Stowaway us in a web of looping plots obtuse anecdotes and countless characters some of which come and go with hundreds of pages between mention The maze of a plot that must be navigated is acknowledged as being similar to the course of events Slothrop encounters on the way which he compares to the MBTA by riding each branch the proper distance knowing when to transfer keeping some state of minimum grace though it might often look like he s headed the wrong way this network of all plots may yet carry him to freedom There must be a sense of trust that eventually if you keep gutting through there will be a conclusion to satisfy a journey of such magnitude There is a constant paranoia overwhelming each printed word a paranoia that the Reader must assimilate by proxy in order to fully appreciate the madness at hand Yet paranoia itself must be a sort of comfort as well While there is a fear of the Invisible Hand at play pushings through psychological nods in the right way it is still a comfort that we are part of Their greater plan For the preterits this They is the only sense of God they will ever feel as they are looked over by God himself This whole novel is the interaction of such Preterits from the fetishists to the colony of escaped concentration camp members and the Reader must become a member of these second sheep as they must lose their selves along with Slothrop The Reader is dragged through the mud and muck of a smattering of various theories and to keep their sanity they attempt to assign meaning to these elusive threads flashing about them in order to keep going But perhaps this is just what Pynchon wants The Syntactic Licensing of Ellipsis us to do assigning Him the role of the They and the Reader will begin to feel paranoid that this is all in jest that Pynchon is simply pulling the world over their eyes and will begin toestion even their own powers of deduction We have learned that all that is comforting must be released not yet knowing at these points in the novel that there is only a void awaiting with total freedom and even the paranoid ponderings are only a comfort for The Persian of Thunder Bay us in Pynchon s world If there is something comforting religious if you want about paranoia there is still also anti paranoia where nothing is connected to anything a condition not many ofs can bear for long Well right now Slothrop feels himself sliding onto the anti paranoid part of his cycle feels the whole city around him going back roofless vulnerable ncentered as he is and only pasteboard images now of the Listening Enemy left between him and the wet sky First note the reversals in this then swoon at the powerful prose in the second half Now assign meaning to this ote but Slap no Pynchon says there is no meaning But then feel yourself become transparent and weightless fading into oblivion with no reference to the world around you This is the ltimate dilemma we are faced with in the Zone It is no surprise the Reader is made to feel so paranoid in a novel rife with corporate conspiracy much of which is highly researched and forms an impressive historical fiction aspect to this novel If those rambling through the Zone are the preterits moved by the They than these corporations are one o Advice for a first time reader of Gravity s Rainbow Gravity s Rainbow is a book you either love or hate and if you hate it it s probably because you couldn t finish the damn thing Though by no means impenetrable the novel is daunting enough to merit a list of tips for those wishing to tackle it for the first time Below is my advice on how new readers can get over the hump Trust me it s a small hump and the masterpiece that lies on the other side is worth the effort1 Read V first Pynchon s V is shorter and accessible than Gravity s Rainbow but addresses the same themes in a similar style If you enjoyed V you will have built p a reserve of goodwill for Pynchon that will carry you through the initial rough patches of Gravity s Rainbow This advice was given to me years ago and I m glad I took it2 Accept that you won t Finding Maubee understand everythingDon t be concerned if you can t follow the many digressions or keep track of every minor character that popsp As with other famously difficult novels Gravity s Rainbow s real payoff comes in the rereading so you shouldn t feel obliged to linger over each passage ntil it makes sense Pynchon isn t trying to lord it over you by writing a book this dense it s just his way of giving you your money s worth Just follow what you can the first time through which fortunately is a lot3 Accentuate the accessible Gravity s Rainbow s nreadability is over hyped Yes there are many jarring digressions but threading through them is a fairly conventional detective story Sure there are lyrical passages that take off for the stratosphere but they are grace notes in a melody of otherwise breezy narrative prose So on your first time through it s enough to follow the main plot will Slothrop find the mysterious Rocket 00000 and enjoy Pynchon s jokes which are laugh out loud funny4 Don t give p too earlyI don t want to say that Gravity s Rainbow gets off to a slow start but
It Has A Lot Of Scene Setting To Do Andhas a lot of scene setting to do and engine that really drives the book along only gets revved p in part 2 Part 1 is a well executed minor key portrait of wartime London but part 2 is where the drugs kick in so stick with the novel at least that far. World with the Potato Chips for Breakfast A True Story of Growing Up in an Alchoholic Family ultimate rocket There is not one story but a proliferation of characters Pirate Prentice Teddy Bloat Tantivy Mucker Maffick Saure Bummer and and events that tantalize the reader with suggestions of vast patterns only just past our comprehension Gravity's Rainbow is a blizzard of references to science history high culture and the lowest of jok.