Ask The Dust
I found Ask the Dust through 1K, which is considered it one of the best books. I read it in one day, LOVED it .
A book written in the 1930s but startlingly modern in its sensibilities. It was clearly ahead of its time. It has a powerful ending; a great; haunting ending that leaves a sickness and a longing and a reminder about the dark side of life. This book had a strong dark message that leaves one very aware of life at the end; powerful. The story itself is very well executed, the characters are great, everything flows very smoothly, its short and easy to read and leaves one with a wide array of interesting feelings and thoughts, and for a man who's been through similar situations - its worth the read. However - I will say I saw somebody saying that Arturo Bandini is warm, and gentle - I didn't take him like that, although he kind of appears that way - yet he's certainly more mean than he even comes off toward Camilla if you pick up on more of the subtleties - bitter for certain, long before he's blessed with her ending. The character really embellishes and builds himself up and sets himself apart from the other in a certain way, but I guess that's his macho character, in certain ways that I think draw from the story - he doesn't show his more lowly or vulnerable side as good as I think he should have - but that's ok - there is still an honesty in how he identifies with his emotions, being used and unloved and still giving and traveling on through the broken dreams - but I also think the author has a more deceptive side that only certain other writers would get.
All in all, Fante describes this tragic struggle in such raw and poetic detail, yet also captures it in true style. Dust is the universal symbol throughout: Temporary, fleeting, and sweeping over us. It is dust that escorts us away and covers over all sins, desolate and somehow redemptive at the same time. Sections of this book are like nothing I've ever read before, beautifully written and deeply contemplative.
Highly recommended, best novel I've read in awhile...