#229 Labyrinths

I read this last week but it’s taken a while to get around to writing about it: I might have been putting it off because this is (happily) the first time since I started this blog that it’s actually serving its purpose in making me remember (even for a week or so) a book that I would otherwise be very tempted to forget immediately.
Labyrinths (by Jorge Luis Borges) is like a literary version of medicine: I can tell it’s meant to be good for me to read it but it is (in my opinion) painfully dull and reading it was not an enjoyable experience. It’s a collection of short stories 3 – 7 pages long which might be for the best because at least none of them took very long to read, equally it took me a while to figure out whether the book had already started or whether I was still accidentally reading introductions (which had already put me off – normally I skip over the introduction in case it gives anything away but I don’t know anything about the author and thought it would be good to find out. This introduction – as far as I read – consisted of a series of paragraphs beginning “Jorge Luis Borges is…” and then different points about how great he is).
I will admit that a few of the stories weren’t terrible – there was one about a detective which kind of reminded me of The Purloined Letter by Edgar Allen Poe and Emma Zunz, a story about a girl who avenges her father’s death and a couple of others but on the whole I was not impressed. I think it’s testament to just how hard I found it to get through this that it took 3 2 hour long commutes to get through it and it’s not a long book.


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