Originally Posted by ConfusedBeginner
Oh man, I tried to, but couldn't slog my way through it and stopped after the first few chapters. I remember it feeling very tedious but I'm not much for fiction so maybe that colored my opinion. I have the book here somewhere and might try again since it sounds like the plot gets better as you go.
I'm reading Dark Money by Jane Mayer which is basically about the evil billionaire Koch brothers. It's interesting but it sure is depressing. Especially now.
I totally get what you mean...I struggled to get into it at the beginning (would only read it in 10-15 page chunks then feel drained and had to put it down). I'd say I didn't really start getting into the groove of it until 150 pages in or so...it probably took me a month of reading it on and off to get halfway through and then I ended up reading like the last 400 pages in 2 days! After I finished it and was reading sites about it, I found this piece of advice on How to Read Infinite Jest.
I really wish I had seen that before I started! I agree with everything they said (especially the part about the Wardine chapter - honestly you can probably skip it entirely if you find it tiring to read all those never ending dialect sentences....I don't think there is really anything "crucial" to the story in that section that would take away from your overall understanding).
I like fiction, but I also have a really bad memory for details, and this book requires you to keep track of a lot, but ultimately I found it really funny, beautiful, thought-provoking...Honestly while the non-linear plot is certainly intriguing and ingenious, I most enjoyed DFW's insights into humanity (addiction, family dynamics, sadness, technology, identity, etc). It certainly isn't for everyone, but if you can stick with it those first 100-200 pages, you might find it very rewarding
Before IJ, I read The Nix (another long novel (fiction) that jumps time and viewpoints, and one that I also recommend). So now I'm focusing on some non-fiction. Dark Money is on my "To Read" list, so hopefully I will get to that one sometime. Last night, I finished In the Darkroom by Susan Faludi. Tonight I plan on starting Evicted: Poverty and Profit in the American city by Matthew Desmond which I suspect will also be interesting and depressing at the same time.