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Within a Budding Grove: 07/10/10
I started reading the In Search of Lost Time series (for lack of a better word) last year. For Swann's Way I did a weekly post covering thirty pages of the book. I started to do the same with thing Within a Budding Grove but in April I misplaced the book. By the time I found the book again I had fallen out of the habit of writing these posts. Plus, they weren't exactly popular, so I just decided to keep reading my thirty pages a week and finish the book.
In Within a Budding Grove the unnamed protagonist has grown up. After his romance with Swann's daughter has gone sour he flees Paris to find solace with his beloved grandmother. His time with his grandmother comes together as a mixture of comparisons with his childhood memories and his adventures as a young adult.
Of the two books, I feel like I connected better with Swann's Way. Now part of that might be the fact that I misplaced the book for so long. Part of it too is that I was reading the first book with greater care.
That said, there are excellent scenes involving the protagonist's attempts at finding a girl friend, over indulging at the local hotel restaurant and other juvenile pursuits.
I'm still debating whether I should continue with the remaining books. What do you think?
Comment #1: Saturday, July, 10, 2010 at 18:52:19
I say keep going, but don't let it be the only thing you read. I took on the challenge of reading the whole Proust "series" last year (it took me about nine months, in between other reading). It was a struggle but in the end worth it. There are times when I appreciated the beauty of Proust's language yet others where I wanted to throw the book at the wall. I had set up a group on Goodreads called The Proust Project that is still fairly active if you want to check it out.
(This year I'm attempting Ulysses)
Comment #2: Wednesday, July 14, 2010 at 19:57:58
I think I will keep going. It certainly won't be the only thing I read. I made it through the last two by reading 30 pages a week. I think now though that I'll take a break and use those 30 pages a week on other long books I want to read: Jonathan Strange and Mr. Norrell and Vanity Fair for example.
Comment #3: Sunday, July, 11, 2010 at 11:25:51
I personally wouldn't bother. It seems like it was a lot to read, or just not one you could get into. I would cut your losses, and move on. There has to be a better series out there with your name on it!
On a different note, please stop by my book blog today for my review of To Kill A Mockingbird, in lieu of its anniversary. It was my first time reading it!
Comment #4: Wednesday, July 14, 2010 at 20:08:12
I've decided I will keep going but I will take a break before I purchase the third book. Thirty pages a week isn't too much work and I am curious to see what happens next.
To Kill a Mockingbird is on my to be read pile. It will be my first time reading it too.