Maira's Books

In January of 2005 I started this blog as a record of books I’ve read as I was afraid I would forget what I have read. I have often referred back to my own blog to remember a book's contents or see what I have read by an author. I have enjoyed passing my books on to friends or recommending books to read. I know I have missed recording some, but in general I try to keep up with what I have read or listened to.

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Location: Kalamazoo, MI, United States

I am a librarian at Waldo Library at Western Michigan University.

Monday, June 05, 2017

The Lover by Marguerite Duras (1984)

Translated from French by Barbara Bray (1985)
Read this as it was one of the books on a list recommended by Roxanne Gay - a keynote speaker at a library conference in Baltimore this spring.

It's been a long time since I've read something like this. I would call it stream of consciousness. Why do I have a need for chapters, places where I can draw my breath? This whole book consisted of  vignette's (not the right word), usually a paragraph, no more than a page and a half in length in a small format book. The girl is 15 and a half, lives in Saigon with her mother and brother in a boarding school, goes to a French high school, dreams of being a writer. On the ferry she meets a Chinese man in a big black limousine. They become lovers, but his family would not hear of him marrying her. She eventually moves to Paris and has a life. With plenty of jumps into the past and future. Turns out this is autobiographical.

I don't regret reading it, but can't say I got a lot out of it. Maybe I am just too used to the typical plot driven book, though this too had a story too, and beautiful writing.


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