Friday 21 June 2013

Book Beginnings on Friday: Vile Bodies by Evelyn Waugh

It's that time of the week again! Thanks to Rose City Reader for hosting this event where you share the first line or two from your current read and then offer some brief thoughts about any initial impressions. This will be my second time participating in this meme, which reminds me that I still need to write a review for Saul Bellow's Herzog that I finished a few days ago but have found myself delaying based on a variety of circumstances (mostly, lack of confidence and the fact that I lost an extensive amount of my notes on the subway, ugh). Anyways, getting back to business:

"It was clearly going to be a bad crossing."

This opening line did not particularly hook me with much force but as I continued reading, it did not take long to find myself intrigued by Waugh's flowery and posh writing style, which is very reminiscent of Fitzgerald at times. I find his sardonic humor and use of satire to be most amusing in mocking the upper class of England during the 1920's. However, the story (or lack thereof) and characters are so over the top and silly that it is difficult to take anything seriously. Thankfully, the book is relatively short in length and the light prose is allowing me to breeze through it without much difficulty other than forcing myself to reach the end. This is my first experience reading anything by Waugh but he does not seem to be an author that I am anxious to read more from anytime soon.

If anyone has read this one or is a fan of Waugh's other works, I'd love to know what you think! Or if you have never heard of this book or author and want to leave a comment, that's cool too. :)


  1. Heard of but never read Waugh. My mother gave me Brideshead Revisited ages ago (lost the copy in a move) but I was too young to get interested in reading it. I think I started to read it but lost interested and never even made it through the first 1/4 of the book.

    All of the books I'm reading right now are fiction so I'm afraid the first sentence would not be very engaging. BTW, I'm glad you're back.

  2. Thanks Satia, it's great to be back and start reading again. I hope you are doing well. :)

    I was actually going to read Brideshead Revisted first but chose this one instead since it was recommended by a friend and is much shorter in length. I am not too thrilled about his writing as well but there is a chance he might grow on me.

  3. I haven't read any of his works. I'll be looking forward to your review of this book though.

    My post

  4. Oh cool! Glad to see someone reading this one. I read it about ten years ago or so....I enjoyed it, but his writing does take some getting used to.

    Here's my Friday Memes.