Curious yet Conflicted

Have you seen or read about this book – A Little Life by Hanya Yanagihara? alittlelifeWell, I’m a little conflicted.  It is so strange to see the book reviewed as – five stars!!  But I can’t recommend it.  Difficult, yet riveting, heart-wrenching yet beautifully profound! This book is as brutal as it is gentle, as horrifying as it is beautiful…I even saw someone say that after reading it, they had to call into work – SAD.  Over and over I read the reviews of other conflicted readers – as awful as it was, I couldn’t stop reading and My eyes were often blurred with tears, yet I continued to read. I saw regret and even anger but it was rare; why did I do this to myself? one reviewer wrote although another reviewer saw it differently – Some think this is beauty, I think this is tragedy porn….

What the heck is tragedy porn??

It is incredibly long – 700 pages (a 32 hour audio book) are people impressed by how epic it is? One of the most memorable books that I ever read was both incredibly sad and 600 pages – is that why it was one of my most memorable?

When I do read the reviews, I feel a  strange excitement and anticipation about the characters that are waiting to be met, apparently they are well written and multi-dimensional.  At the same time, when I see and hear so many warnings, I wonder – would reading this be something I live to regret? I don’t know.  When I think back to books that have affected me, I may have slept with the lights on for the entire night the following week, but I didn’t regret reading the book.

Do I forgo a possibly beautiful book and mind my emotions (I’m not exactly sally sunshine as it is) or Throw caution to the wind, and read the beautiful, yet horrifying book?

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