Monday, April 25, 2011

Subtlety, Rather Than Blatancy

The ending of Atonement had a unique feel to it, almost as if I already knew the ending; or that I have already accepted it. I do not mean that I knew the exact ending or the events that would occur, but rather I knew the emotion or reaction I would give. Surely enough, I had the feeling of indifference or more appropriately, contentment. In the other books I always had this lingering longing for closure in the endings. The open-ended interpretations kept expanding the boundaries of truth. In, The Things They Carried, there was an obvious contrast between story-truth and happening-truth since O'Brien directly tells you what is fact and fiction. Through this, O'Brien made the reader wonder what is actually considered truth and what is not. In, Life of Pi, Pi describes two ideal stories of which both fully explain what had happened to Pi. The two contrasting stories gave the reader a sense of truth being used in a unique manner. By Pi using animals in his first story, he gave a deeper meaning it rather than giving dry, yeastless facts. In, Lying, Slater presents this idea of lying as being actual truth. Despite her lying about her epilepsy, or her lying about not having epilepsy, she ultimately wrote a memoir about her life by using epilepsy as the main focus. This basically forced the reader into thinking about lies being used as a way to convey truth. However, in, Atonement, the word truth is never really covered. Granted, though, that there is an interesting concept of truth in the book. The idea that what you fully believe may not be true, and the way it is done is elegantly subtle. There isn't this harsh contrast away from the actual story, so the author can explain or deduce what is happening or what they are trying to convey. This book had a more realistic feel to it, straying away from its philosophical brethren. The reason I think of realism is because this concept of truth directly related to a believable tragedy; because of that I believe that it is unique when put against the other books we have read.

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