The Unvanquished

A whole lotta Faulkner indeed! Although Mr. W.F. hasn`t really stunned me with any of his works this is the fourth of his novels I`ve read. The action takes place in the most typical place which Faulkner has ever written about - the American South. The heroes are typical Faulkner`s material as well - John Sartoris is the main hero of the book (or was it Bayard Sartoris, I`m not really sure), and there is even a man named Snopes involved in the story. The novel consists of several episodes from the American Civil war. Those episodes are only loosely connected and a tight structure is surely not the the purpose of the book. There`s a young Sartoris kid and his black friend that took on adventures a bit similar to that of Huck Finn and Tom Sawyer - this whole thing is quite similar to the kids in "Intruders in the dust" which I also found to be a bit influenced by Mark Twain. Probably the main difference between Faulkner and Twain is the time when their books were written. Faulkner provided an updated for the 20th century requirements version of Mark Twain. Although this "update" provides several advantages in terms of literary qualities and depth it also has a few drawbacks. Whilest Mark Twain is easy to ready and understandable Faulkner is terribly complicated. I already fealt it in "Sartoris", but after having read "The Unvanquished" in the original and not in a Latvian translation I have to repeat my sentence once again - it`s hard to read Faulkner, and not always you`ll be rewarded for your devoted and hard work.
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