This book starts off unpromisingly. I went back to the beginning a few times because I kept losing interest during the first chapter, abandoning the attempt then forgetting what I’d read when I picked it up to try again. But after the first couple of chapters the protagonist starts to have interesting adventures which held my attention.
It also took me some time to get used to the language which is of the time the book is set in: 1865. Although I had to look up many words at first, I remembered their meanings when they appeared again. Then my reading flowed and I was transported back in time. It was so enjoyable that I wouldn’t mind reading it again. It’s a story of adventure, friendship, hardship, love and nature. It is something of an epic.
There is a lot more to the book than the language and the plot. There are recurring themes, symbolism and so on but I didn’t look into those aspects in much detail this time around. The Guardian book club examined the book and there are some good notes on the novel here.
(7th in 2012)