Tuesday, October 18, 2016

The Abundance-Annie Dillard

The Abundance-Annie Dillard

the facts
satisfaction: side
pages: 304
gender: F
nationality: USA
year: 2016
narrative non fiction

A collection (both old and new) of essays and narrative non fiction from Pulitzer winner Annie Dillard.

There're quite a lot of different topics in here-seemingly the main thread connecting them is Dillard herself. The only other thread might be landscapes as many of the essays involved nature/landscape imagery. As a collection, this is not cohesive, at all. I've actually never read Dillard's writing (that I remember) and I suspect this was not the best introduction I could have sought. My overall feeling is that of ambivalence. On the one hand, the prose is amazing-rich and evocative and heartfelt- but on the other hand many of the essays were...maybe they were too metaphysical. I got a sense that there was such an effort being expended on making them metaphysical that it was too much for me and thus it never 'spoke' to me. Other essays had very overt Christian themes and imagery which is not for me personally. Overall, I ended up feeling like there was no need to deconstruct anything as fully as Dillard does. I am in a minority opinion here....
And then there are the one or two essays that I found to be amazing. I was upset they were short and Dillard wasn't lavishing her prose further on this topic. Not surprising to me, they were mostly ones that were more memoir-like than the rest so I feel like I'd mostly enjoy a Dillard memoir.

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