Derik Badman's Journal

2022-06-14 08:37

About a quarter or more of the way through Jerusalem and still really enjoying it. I read it a few years ago now so I don't recall all the specifics, but I remember enough about the larger structure and events that on reread I am better picking up references early in the book to what happens and what is revealed later in the book. Think I'm also finding it easier to catch the various interconnections between chapters. So far all the chapters (does this stay the case throughout the book... I think?) are focalized via one character usually in a kind of free indirect discourse that avoids a too strict (and often obnoxious) monologue format. The characters all have their own voices (and it is impressive how Moore manages that across both the types of characters and the time periods they exist in, I've a few times had to look up some slightly archaic terminology), not unlike his Voices of the Fire, but this is a little less aggressive in inhabiting the mind of the characters (the earlier novel is less successful, imo, having not long back reread it). Kind of wish I had a big map of Northampton out so I could trace the characters' wanderings to see how they overlap. There is a map in the front of the book, but it doesn't include all the landmarks and covers a very specific area. Hard not to feel a Joyce influence, especially in relation to chapters in Ulysses like the "Wandering Rocks" one. Having read a lot of Moore's work (though not exhaustively so), I've got to consider this my favorite. Sometimes his verbosity can get the most of him in his comics work, where the materials of the page/layout/design often work against reading prose as does the shift or reading style and expectation between reading a comic/images and straight prose (both evident, for instance. in the long pieces often found in the back of League of Extraordinary Gentlemen issues).