Tuesday, April 17, 2012

Passive Readers Beware

Elie Weisel’s The Town Beyond the Wall is written in a fractured manner, moving back and forth in time and place.  Some of the text is in italics, for reasons that are not fully revealed until later in the novel.

Keep reading, as the fruits of this novel are fully revealed at the end.  Then, the entire book makes sense, although it leaves many questions about weighty matters unanswered.   

Weisel is a master at this type of storytelling.  He reveals nothing until it is absolutely necessary.  He does not feel the need to coddle the reader in the first chapter, lulling him or her to continue to read.  We must work to read his novels.  If we wish to derive benefit from them, there can be no passive readers.

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