Just finished the second book in Anthony Powell’s A Dance to the Music of Time, A Buyer’s Market. His writing does seem like a river of words and I had trouble getting into it at first and then it swept me along for no very obvious reason. Nick Jenkins is starting to make his way in the world, working for a publisher of art books, falling in and out of love, and running into old friends. Stringham and Widmerpool both reappear, Uncle Charles makes a brief, comical entrance, and Jenkins goes to parties, weddings, funerals, observing his fellow man not always accurately. I couldn’t help thinking how bored many people would be by this. Nothing much happens, the incidents tend to be small scale, bursting with emotions, but rarely Nick’s emotions.
I like this cover. It looks like a mystery. Perhaps misleading. I fully intend to keep reading. I don’t know how far I got last time. I thought to the third or fourth one, but I didn’t remember this one at all. Not that there’s much to remember. I shall be surprised if I remember this one in two years. It’s not so much about what happens as about the way people flow through life, drawling closer and further apart as the current takes them, some moving faster or getting caught in a sort of eddy, reencountering each other at intervals, sometimes for an afternoon, sometimes far longer. Do not go into this expecting a plot, and that’s what surprises me about my liking this, usually I want a story, not just a series of events, but I suppose if done the right way, I don’t mind a series of events. I’m not clear on why I should mind it sometimes and not others.
This is my eighth book for the #20booksofsummer(andfall)