Thursday, February 25, 2010

Reading: The Accidental Tourist

I’m going to try to be better about sharing what I am reading here. I’m not sure why I don’t usually do so. Maybe after I start, I will realize why I don’t. Here it goes.

I finished The Accidental Tourist by Anne Tyler last week.
For some reason I’ve always wanted to read it and I got interested in it again after seeing Up in the Air in December. It took me a while to remember to go to the used book store and buy a copy. I also had such high hopes for this book that I bought two other Anne Tyler novels even though I had never read anything of hers before.

I was not disappointed. Anne Tyler writes in a way that allows you to really have “buy in” with the characters and the story. And, in the same manner I recognized some of my own traveling behaviors watching Up in the Air, I found myself identifying even more with Macon Leary as a fellow reluctant traveler. When you travel for work because you absolutely have to, I think it makes you want to be home more and work to make the required travel as quick and painless as possible. She captures that perfectly – right down to the book you travel with that you use to keep out of unwanted conversations (though the mp3 players is good for that now also)!

I am certain I would not have appreciated the book if I had put down the Atari joystick and attempted to read it when it came out in 1985. I also never saw the movie that came out in 1988. I did watch it immediately after finishing the book. William Hurt is a great Macon Leary. Geena Davis as Muriel was another perfect choice. I really like Bill Pullman and he was a good Julian but the character was not exactly the same in the movie and I felt that Kathleen Turner was just a bit too stiff for how I expected Sarah to be. I guess over all I missed a lot of the depth of the book but it’s hard to expect all of that when it is condensed down into 2 hours.

It’s a wonderful book and I am glad I finally read it. I am looking forward to reading Breathing Lessons by her. And, I will be doing that once I am done with Fletch. I’ve always wanted to read Fletch and I’m already quite a bit in. It is really fantastic so far and it makes me want to go back and watch the movie again.

Once I am done, I’ll give my report.

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