Non fiction: Worst book 2018!
- Author: A.J. Liebling
- Title: Just Enough Liebling
- Published: 2004
- Trivia: A posthumous collection of Liebling’s writings
- Finished: 19.09.2018
- Genre: non-fiction
- Rating: F- (..can I go any lower?)
- List of Challenges 2018
- Monthly plan
I cannot for the life of me understand the high
scores this booked has accrued on Goodreads.com
Reading books that numb my soul
teach me to appreciate how
a good book can change a life!
This books wins the prize.
Worst non-fiction I read in 2018
and here is why…
- If you have the time….here are my notes.
- If you decide to skip this review
- …I understand completely!
At Table In Paris:
- Liebling studied in Paris 1925-1926 and
- traveled around Normandy etc.
- The stories are filled with references
- to buildings and streets he knows well.
Paris the First:
- Liebling describes his visit to Paris with his parents in 1911
- He was 7 years old…and I wonder if a child is a reliable narrator.
- While Liebling’s parents dine on French food and wine “en ville’
- …he was firmly in the care of a dreaded nanny ‘fraulëin”
- This chapter was quaint but awful.
- It was an overblown narrative about childhood memories and
- fantasies with nanny and family in Paris.
- I lost interest about half way through the story.
- I hope the dispatches from the WW II years will be better.
The War and After:
- Unfortunately the reports written during Liebling’s time in Europe
- during WW II were disappointing to say the least.
- He is still gushing about food and wine and not
- enough storytelling about the people. Unbalanced.
Letter From Paris June 1940:
- Clinical tone…I expected more emotion describing the dread of
- invasion of Paris after Holland and Belgium’s swift collapse.
- The images I remember from Suite Française (I. Némirovsky)
- …are still vivd in my mind.
- Liebling did not come close to
- describing the angst the Parisians felt with the
- Germans standing ready to pounce on the city.
- Trip from England in convoy sailing to
- …Port Arthur Texas during WW II.
- This story was just pointless
- …waste of my reading time.
Quest for Mollie:
- This was not a WW II dispatch…..it was a novella!
- I just cannot understand the praise given to
- Liebling’s WW II correspondance.
- His stories are too long…and I cannot find a moment
- the hook ” that captures my attention.
- This is yet another chapter that I have started in good faith
- …and ended up being disappointed.
Days with the Daydaybay:
- Long description of Liebling’s
- ….walk around the streets of the Sorbonne.
- He recalls his student days there.
- Long description of Liebling’s entry into liberated Paris.
- The narrative includes his fellow reporters from other
- newspapers: Jack Roach and A. Morrison.
- This was one of the better stories….but still too, too long.
- Details, details and more details that numbed this reader.
The Hounds with Sad Voices:
- Liebling returns to Normandy (1957) and is
- searching for a chateau. All he can remember is
- the sound of hounds with sad voices near the building.
- But as always Liebling’s days end in restaurants.
- This is yet anothr gastronomic exposition….ho-hum.
- It is no surprise that Liebling loved his food and drink.
- He drank and ate excessively and reached a weight of 250 lbs.
- He sufferd gout in the later years of his life.
- He died at the young age of 59 yr.
City Life: The Jollity Building …and the rest of the stories
- The last half of the book describes
- …colorful promoters, boxers, trips to the
- ….Place Bar & Grill.
- Liebling loved the horses so we also
- read about the Turf & Field Club and Belmont Racetrack.
- Eating again…
- Libeling wrote for The New Yorker magazine so
- we can assume he was a good writer.
- But in my opinion the stories were too long and
- the pace was slow because of downpour of
- details that inundated this reader.
- Liebling’s vivid descriptions of boxing matches
- and other sporting events are of a bygone era.
- It did not interest me at all.
- In truth…I read 60% of the book…then skimmed the rest.
- I was glad when I could close the book.
- Reading books that numb my soul
- teache me to appreciate how
- a good book can change a life!
- This books wins the prize.
- Worst non-fiction I read in 2018….so far!