- Fizzy Thoughts: Octavian Nothing

Octavian Nothing

Wednesday, July 02, 2008


Octavian Nothing (or the really long title, The Astonishing Life of Octavian Nothing, Traitor to the Nation, Volume One: The Pox Party)
M.T. Anderson
September 2006
351 pages

I read about this book over on Dewey’s blog and was intrigued enough to buy it. Unfortunately, I didn’t like it (not holding any punches today, am I?). I had a hard time getting past the language. Written (at least the first part) in the first person in a formal style, it was all I could do to finish the book. Evidently, many people are fond of it (it’s won awards), but this is a teen book filled with words I didn’t know (such as articularities…and okay, I’ll confess I was too lazy to look them up. Except wait…my spell checker doesn’t even recognize articularities, and google was no help. Is it even a word?!?!), and so I just ended up feeling stoopid. Okay, maybe not stupid. But frustrated. And bored. And oh so glad to be finished.

And the big mystery? Not so much a mystery to me. Maybe it’s all those social science and history classes I sat through, but the story didn’t shock me.

However, I’m not going to discuss the story. Because if you plan on reading this book, I’d suggest you don’t read any of the reviews. Or even a synopsis. Okay, read Dewey’s, because she did a good job, and I know there are people out there who will like the book. Maybe.

So having written this insightful and inspiring review (umm, yeah, heavy sarcasm there), is there anyone out there who might want to read this one? Because I’ll send you my copy. Octavian’s feeling a little unloved in my home, so please, do us both a favor and take him off my hands.

5 comment(s):

bethany said...

Oh, I am interested, throw my name in the hat!!

pretty please!?

gautami tripathy said...

I would say count me in! But as I live in India, I suppose I don't count!

:D

Kristinia - Loving Heart Mommy

said...

I'd love to take the book off of your hands, my hubby and I both enjoying reading whatever we can get our hands on!

Dewey said...

Really, this is a book I liked and disliked both, for different reasons. Did you think most teens would feel as you did? I think so, but then some teens commented telling me the loved it, so who knows! Maybe "most teens" still applies, because most teens don't read book blogs, right?

softdrink said...

Hey Dewey...yeah, I think the language is too formal for most teens. I really don't see it grabbing their interest.

And by the way...I just realized I never responded to gautami and kristinia. I sent this book to bethany, as she was the first reply. We'll see what she thinks of the book.

In a real sense, people who have read good literature have lived more than people who cannot or will not read. It is not true that we have only one life to live; if we can read, we can live as many more lives and as many kinds of lives as we wish. ~S.I. Hayakawa

The World is a book, and those who do not travel read only a page.
~St. Augustine

Travel is fatal to prejudice, bigotry, and narrow-mindedness.
~Mark Twain

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