Swagbucks Book Club – The Sound and the Fury Review

Welcome to the Swagbucks Book Club.  Thank you for all of your cook book recommendations last week!  I’m excited to check them out and hope you found new ones to try as well.  A quick reminder that next Friday, 10/26/12, we will be discussing this month’s reading selection – Miss Peregrine’s Home for Peculiar Children by Ransom RiggsThe Kindle version of the book is available in the Swag Store.

Today we feature a review of a classic example of stream of consciousness narrative as suggested by Swaggernaut mikiross who will receive 500 Swag Bucks in return.  How can  you get 500 Swag Bucks?  Simply send in a 2-4 paragraph review of a book that you would like to share with other Swagbucks Book Club members.  You can feature any book from any genre, I just ask that the review does not appear elsewhere on the internet.  Send your review with your swagname to bookclub@swagbucks.com.  If your review is featured you will earn 500 Swag Bucks!

The Sound and the Fury by William Faulkner as reviewed by mikiross

“Life’s but a walking shadow, a poor player,
That struts and frets his hour upon the stage,
And then is heard no more. It is a tale
Told by an idiot, full of sound and fury,
Signifying nothing.”
– Macbeth

Every once in a magnificent while, we pick up a book which forces us to reinvent our understanding of our own language; a book can so arrest us that we feel as babies do, learning for the first time the wonder of words, and the different ways in which they can speak to us.

William Faulkner gave me that gift recently, first with ‘Light in August’, a bizarre and somewhat detached, yet simple tale of a rural family taking their dead mother’s corpse to a neighboring town to be buried, and then more acutely in the book I’ll tell you about now, ‘The Sound and the Fury’. This is a work of literature which closer resembles a richly textured oil painting, a vast, expansive canvas stretching past peripheral vision, its edges indefinite. The story, rather than unfolding in a linear fashion, is told in Faulkner’s signature stream-of-consciousness style, narrating in broad, accentuating strokes, adding layer upon layer of detail until, by the last chapter, you understand it not as a series of events, but as a singular, multi-dimensional image, spanning generations, yet frozen in time.

A shadowy portrait of decay, ‘The Sound and the Fury’ revolves around the lives of a formerly prominent family in post-reconstruction Mississippi. It tells its story through the eyes, ears, and minds of a handful of painfully unforgettable characters – Benjy, the vulnerable and absorbent man-child, seeing everything and understanding nothing; Caddy, the rebelliously sexual castaway; the brilliant Quentin, tortured by the existential fallacy of his upbringing; and the cruel and pitiless Jason, his cold shoulder long since turned to the world around him – each embodying a piece of the sin that Faulkner saw eating away at the fragile fabric of American Southern culture. Lust, greed, pride, and avarice all conspire to the downfall of the men and women of the Compson family, and with them, the society which once supported them.

See you next week!