gehayi: (mr darcy with sharks in space (inlaterda)
gehayi ([personal profile] gehayi) wrote in [personal profile] melannen 2017-03-21 09:13 am (UTC)

I found Jonathan Strange intolerable in hardcover and paperback (the book was so heavy that even holding it open for more than fifteen minutes was painful), but good as an e-book. Being able to jump back and forth between footnotes and the main text helped, because the author has a tendency to write really, really LONG footnotes. Like, whole pages of a detailed and complicated story. That got REALLY confusing in print form.

The second thing is that the book is, like the nineteenth-century books its style imitates, a very slow build. Jonathan Strange doesn't even show up until Part 2. The first part is about Mr. Norrell, who can do magic but who is incredibly selfish about permitting other people access to magical texts, and the magic he does (which isn't always as useful as it could be and ends up causing torment for more than one person). Everything in the book, from the long, detailed footnotes to the slow unfolding of the story, exists as it does for a reason.

But if you can get hold of a Kindle or Nook copy and can relax over a story that is going to take its time getting where it wants to go--a meandering stroll rather than a passionate race--I think that you'll enjoy it.

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