Wednesday, April 21, 2010

Max, cats; Morel's invention

I've spent the last couple of days down in South America--reading books five and six for the Girl Detective's 15 Books 15 Days 15 Blogs project.

Moacyr Scliar's 1981 novella Max and the Cats was "the spark" behind Yann Martel's Life of Pi--you may well remember the furor from a few years back that followed on the heels of Martel's Booker Prize win. Martel was publicly accused of theft of "intellectual property" instead of inspiration, although Brazilian Scliar never pressed charges.

At any rate, I prefer Pi to Max--Scliar's prose was spare enough to keep me at a remove. Herbert Mitgang found it brilliant, though, and provides an interesting review.

Adolfo Bioy Casares' The Invention of Morel didn't go in any of the directions that I thought it might, but I believe the least said about its plot the better for anyone who hasn't yet read the book--I know it's been popular due to its connection to the TV series Lost (I haven't watched a single episode of Lost, although my Ulysses-reading buddy is a great fan; I will therefore not hold myself back from mentioning a link between Morel and Ulysses during our discussion tonight.)


  1. I went through Zola's, Thérése Raquin and it was a disturbing read, sort of. Unlike Nana, it was fast paced and almost like a thriller. I finished it, almost reluctantly, as if scared of what awaited me at the next page.

  2. Well, now I really want to read Max and the Cats, regardless of whether the idea was lifted.

  3. Love the cover to the Morales book! And didn't like Pi, so don't feel compelled to the Cats.


A bang, not a whimper

  Two months into L.'s retirement, and I'm finished with the stockpiling of books. No more book purchases! Or at least, no purcha...