Sunday, 18 May 2014

Bleeding Edge by Thomas Pynchon

It's the first day of spring 2001 and Maxine Tarnow, though some still have her in their system as Loeffler, is walking her boys to school.

Not much here, but I really wasn't expecting the first sentence from Gravity's Rainbow, as awesome as that is: A screaming comes across the sky. 

Bleeding Edge leads with season and date, which could have been made a subtitle to the chapter or placed somewhere else. It certainly isn't worthy of beginning a novel with. The season is followed with a character and a slightly unusual idea in that people think of Tarnow as a Loeffler, but we can assume that that is the difference between a married and a maiden name. This may be foreshadowing or a little unobtrusive back story, take your pick, or better yet read on if this hooks you. For myself, I don't much care what it's about, which is a blunt way of saying this opening page does not hook me.

Then there is a subtle mention of weather, so I will add the weather cliche award to this opening.

First thing said:


The most interesting thing about this dialogue is the punctuation.

Anyway, the bottom line is that as this is Pynchon, he can do whatever the hell he wants. The hook is in the byline. But I don't read bylines.

Verdict: Fail

Rudy Globird

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