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As I Lay Dying: The Corrected Text (Modern…

As I Lay Dying: The Corrected Text (Modern Library) (original 1930; edition 2000)

by William Faulkner

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10,570146269 (3.9)522
Title:As I Lay Dying: The Corrected Text (Modern Library)
Authors:William Faulkner
Info:Modern Library (2000), Hardcover, 288 pages
Collections:Your library
Tags:All-Time Favorites, Literary

Work details

As I Lay Dying by William Faulkner (1930)

  1. 50
    Wise Blood by Flannery O'Connor (joririchardson)
  2. 61
    The Sun Also Rises by Ernest Hemingway (2below)
    2below: Both involve complicated characters (some might say messed up), crazy mishaps, and fascinating unstable and unreliable narratives. Also excellent examples of Modernist fiction.
  3. 30
    Getting Mother's Body by Suzan-Lori Parks (aethercowboy)
    aethercowboy: Getting Mother's Body is a reimagining of As I Lay Dying through a different culture's point of view.
  4. 20
    A Death in the Family by James Agee (goodwinter)
  5. 21
    Salvage the Bones by Jesmyn Ward (LottaBerling)
  6. 10
    The Death of Ivan Ilych by Leo Tolstoy (SanctiSpiritus)
  7. 00
    Pélagie-la-Charrette by Antonine Maillet (Serviette)

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English (139)  Spanish (4)  French (2)  Italian (1)  All (146)
Showing 1-5 of 139 (next | show all)
As I Lay Dying languished ostensibly 'currently-reading' shelf for some months as I hadn't got to grips with it; while I could recognise the quality of the writing I was, frankly, struggling; partly it hadn't gabbed me, but mostly the difficulty of both the voices in which each chapter is written (the individual slants on the broad Mississippian dialect) and piecing together the story from these separate viewpoints was an impediment. Perhaps I am just getting lazy in my reading.

I returned to it last week, starting again from the beginning, and perhaps this is what helped things fall into place. While still not an easy book (and who says books should be easy) I was now able to both appreciate the writing and 'get' the book enough to enjoy it.

It tells the story of Addie Bundren's death and her family's efforts to transport her body for burial to the town of Jackson, in accordance with her wishes. Told from the points of view of the various characters - the several children of varying ages, her husband, assorted other people variously connected to events and, a couple of times, from Addie herself - the tale builds a complex and partial narrative, revealing secrets, ulterior motives and a web drives and agendas such as those behind all human activity and relationships, simple country folk or otherwise.

In the end, we are left with little resolution and more questions about this family than we had at the beginning, although perhaps this in itself a suitable conclusion as we step back out of their lives. ( )
  Pezski | Jun 8, 2017 |
Faulkner is an acquired taste. As with "The Sound and the Fury" I gave the book a good try but just couldn't get through it. Specifically I didn't really care to see where the characters were going.

Faulkner may be a literary master of depicting a time/place/human condition, and for that I can see how he's loved among some. But I want a story about characters who I want to know about. These people... I could't care where they wound up. ( )
  NateK | May 24, 2017 |
I was never forced to read Faulkner when young. I certainly wouldn't have appreciated him in high school. And yet, forty years later, I guess nothing has changed on that respect. I am utterly at a loss as to how this is "one of the greatest novels of the 20th century". Faulkner said he wrote this over six weeks and didn't change a word. Bully for him and condolences to the readers. This has no redeeming value that I can see, no light shining on a human condition, no entertainment value, no educational component.

Too bad time has a direction arrow. I'd love to get this time back and read something good. If this is one of his most "accessible" novels, well, I'm not going to be reading any more Faulkner. Kind of knew that from the start. ( )
  Razinha | May 23, 2017 |
Previously the only Faulkner I read was the Unvanquished which I loved. This book is dark and somewhat morbid, and thoroughly entertaining. Read it. I'm reading Sound and the Fury next. ( )
  Jamichuk | May 22, 2017 |
good book, appallingly designed cover
  ornithopolis | Mar 19, 2017 |
Showing 1-5 of 139 (next | show all)
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Author nameRoleType of authorWork?Status
William Faulknerprimary authorall editionscalculated
Raver, LornaNarratorsecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed
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To Hal Smith
First words
Jewel and I come up from the field, following the path in single file.
"She's a-going," he says. "Her mind is set on it."
Sometimes I aint so sho who's got ere a right to say when a man is crazy and when he aint. Sometimes I think it aint none of us pure crazy and aint none of us pure sane until the balance of us talks him that-a-way. It's like it aint so much what a fellow does, but it's the way the majority of folks is looking at him when he does it.
My mother is a fish.
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Amazon.com Amazon.com Review (ISBN 067973225X, Paperback)

Faulkner's distinctive narrative structures--the uses of multiple points of view and the inner psychological voices of the characters--in one of its most successful incarnations here in As I Lay Dying. In the story, the members of the Bundren family must take the body of Addie, matriarch of the family, to the town where Addie wanted to be buried. Along the way, we listen to each of the members on the macabre pilgrimage, while Faulkner heaps upon them various flavors of disaster. Contains the famous chapter completing the equation about mothers and fish--you'll see.

(retrieved from Amazon Thu, 12 Mar 2015 18:20:17 -0400)

(see all 5 descriptions)

At the heart of this 1930 novel is the Bundren family's bizarre journey to Jefferson to bury Addie, their wife and mother. Faulkner lets each family member--including Addie--and others along the way tell their private responses to Addie's life. As I Lay Dying is the harrowing, darkly comic tale of the Bundren family's trek across Mississippi to bury Addie, their wife and mother, as told by each of the family members--including Addie herself.… (more)

(summary from another edition)

» see all 6 descriptions

Legacy Library: William Faulkner

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