Thursday, April 23, 2020

Book Report: "Remembrance of Things Past"

Remembrance of Things Past: Volume I - Swann's Way & Within a Budding GroveRemembrance of Things Past: Volume I - Swann's Way & Within a Budding Grove by Marcel Proust
My rating: 3 of 5 stars

Marcel Proust is not the most accessible of the great writers, but he makes up for his distant aloofness with a raw, relatable passion that seeps through his obtuse prose.

"Remembrance of Things Past" is known as one of his most personal projects, delving into themes such as memory, character formation and love gained and lost. Above all hangs a shroud of punishing and festering regret.

It's rarely easy or intuitive to navigate through the gauntlet of psychological barriers that he conjures, but rewards await if you keep your head down and keep things moving. There are moments of deep thought and compelling beauty. There are also times that you need to just stop in order to ruminate, or simply survive to proceed another day.

In the Audible version, narrator John Rowe spins the tale with the appropriate whimsy and aching sense of nostalgia.

Reading often with the intimacy of a hidden diary, "Remembrance of Things Past" is a hard look at a hard life. It's worth your time, but it exacts its price on you.

Publisher provided review access.

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