In this idyllic pastoral setting, unencumbered by the callous father who so quickly abandoned his family responsibilities, Laurie’s adoring mother becomes the c
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I asked my boyfriend if he had ever been physically aroused by a work of fiction while reading on a bus or train.
“Oh, many a time,” he said.
“Really? Did you get an erection?”
“Yes, of course. Isn’t that what you meant? It doesn’t happen so much now,” he said.
“Because you are cynical and you’ve seen it all before?”
“Partly that,” he concurred. “But also because my blood is more sluggish and I have lost the vigour of youth.”
“When was the last time you got an erection while reading in a public place?
When you are transported directly into the childhood of the writer, you know this is a good biography. When you smell the very air, when you feel that what the characters are smiling about is a scene of intense everyday hilarity, and when you want to visit THERE* (for just a second, just for the sake of both reader and writer, just for the sake of experience), well, then you know you are dealing with a superlative type of novel, which weaves truth with literature at an almost-mythical level.
Before I started reading this book, I was warned that it is extremely boring, or as my colleague put it ‘200 pages of absolutely nothing going on, that it’s a complete waste of paper and time as well.
But after I’d read a few pages, I quickly realized that I was enjoying the book immensely. I love the way he describes simple, everyday things, feelings, smells in a way that instantly makes you feel nostalgic about your childhood, that makes you wish to go out of town and settle in the countryside.