Saturday, May 15, 2021

Some Flann O’Brien

 I’ve read three novels by Flann O’Brien, each multiple times. At Swim Two Birds shows an extravagant imagination, as well as the influence of James Joyce. I shall read it once again. It is a power of writing but almost too much so.

The Dalkey Archives nearly seems ordinary compared to its mates. It is fun and silly and surely shows O’Brien’s gift. Maybe he has tempered his wildness for readership’s sake. 

The Third Policeman never met publication in his lifetime. Possibly Dalkey tried to answer that. I find The Third Policeman brims with wonders. It is dark, extravagant, humourous, eerie, strange, folksy, and furtherly described by adjectives, including unsettling, and more. O’Brien presents some wild ideas. One such is the Atomic Theoryin which it is explained how people can become bicycles by the trading of molecules during bumptious rides. I don’t read with scholarly might but I enjoy the breadth and wonder of singular works. Those are the sort that O’Brien wrote. He should be read breathlessly.

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