I have been meaning for an age to read Dostoevsky and, having a literature degree, am slightly ashamed of myself that it has taken until now. I am of course reading a translation but I have to trust that it is a faithful rendition of the original Russian, just as I have trusted the work of Spanish authors, French Authors and so on. It strikes me as a very modern novel, and I think I have said that elsewhere. I know that I mentioned to someone that the novel this most reminded me of was Fight Club
— as well as there being something of the same essence to them both; with them both focusing on the anxieties of man dealing with his place in the world, there also seems to be something of the same feverish energy to both books. You can imagine the glow of the narrator’s skin in Notes From The Underground
being something like that of someone running a temperature — like an inner fire is burning. It is a book that you almost run through; the breathless pace not letting up for a second. It shares, not to labour the point, with Palahniuk’s book, a seemingly similar attitude to women. They talk in the introduction of the book about it’s influence on modern literature and you can truly see it — it has that LOUDquietLOUD structure that we see in a lot of music and a lot of literature where the central protagonist builds to a frenzy, calms down, seems to level off, but is in fact building to a final crescendo. The tension, the feeling, and the sense of humanity that pours out of this book should recommend itself to you; or perhaps as a masterclass in how to write — how to create a compelling narrative; how to imbue your character with true vitality. Dostoevsky is not held to be among the greats for no reason.
Now playing: Dave Gahan – Miracles