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Who is the Narrator of Our Lives?: William Faulkner’s As I Lay Dying

5 Dec

Narration is a big thing not only in books, but also in life. Our actions are ways to which we narrate and navigate our way through our story. But what about inaction and silence? Aren’t those a form of narration as well?

Narration is not only used as a tool within the novel to develop the plot, as well as each separate narrator, but it also exposes the true narrator through the concealment that words put on language. Addie Bundren’s presence in As I Lay Dying, or lack thereof, seems to distract the reader from discovering her side of the story. The irony of the words in the title is though it is in first person narrative, we almost never hear from her point of view. But let me not give out too many spoilers.

The irony of this novel being about a woman who is “dying” but told by those around her who are “alive” is the exact distinction that calls to question the very narration that we are given within the title. As I Lay Dying – first person narrative – seems to reveal a secret hidden within the narrative. This secret would appear to be a story from the perspective of someone who is dying – as per the title – but, in fact, we are almost never introduced to this true first person narrator.

This intrigued me.

One thing to note is that I – the reader – often fall in love with the ironic. Recent blogs I have written were about novels – such as Pamuk’s My Name is Red – allude to this sense of irony within and surrounding that novel, the irony of title’s foreshadowing, and multiple narrators with their own story that still hold the same meaning – rather than different “sides to the story.” It’s ironic, and it’s beautiful to me.

I love this book because it sheds light not only on the fact that the title is strictly about what’s going on as she lays dying, but it also follows this remarkable truth of how what’s going on around us narrates just as much as we do in our own story. As she lays dying is calling to the beauty that even though the title is clearly in first person – which should mean that it’s about her perspective – it’s not. Her perspective is that of what’s around her. It’s what’s happening as she lays dying that’s important, that’s narrating her story.

And isn’t that how it seems – life?

Aren’t we all just lying there as the world just continues to go round, as our story continues on without us, but in reality with us still there?

You can borrow As I Lay Dying in print, as an ebook from eBCCLS or eLibraryNJ, a digital audiobook, and view a movie adaptation on DVD.

Written By:
Sherissa Hernandez
Adult Programming Assistant

Twilight’s 10 Year Anniversary: Reimagine How the Lion Fell in Love with the Lamb

21 Nov

Twilight Reimagined

“And so the lion fell in love with the lamb… What a stupid lamb. What a sick, masochistic lion.”

As we come to the month of November and the 21st approaches, I am hit with the truth that it’s been ten years that the fangirl in us all has freaked out about the first Twilight movie.

As a teenage high schooler whom loved going against trends and getting sucked into the world that was fangirling – I didn’t even know what Twilight, the book, was until the first movie trailer came out. I of course having no knowledge whatsoever on the series was super confused while others squealed with joyous anticipation.  Hadn’t even noticed that almost everyone around me was reading the books. It wasn’t until my best friend told me about the series – while spoiling everything she could on the way up to book three, that I thought I’d give it a shot. That was when I got sucked into a world I wasn’t ready for.

Now, ten years later it’s a franchise that still moves hearts and imaginations everywhere. So much so that you can now tour these iconic spots in Forks and Portland, Oregon and reenact the most iconic moments in the movies.

This series was such a hit that it caused other phenomenon novels to follow after it. Everyone knows of the adult novel Fifty Shades of Grey when it took the world by storm. But what most people don’t know is that E L James was inspired by Twilight and in fact the Grey Series is entirely based off of it and is considered fanfiction.

With rumors of Meyer creating a book through the perspective of Edward himself it’s no surprise that James went along and created a whole new spin off through the eyes of Christian Grey himself.

Unfortunately, as eager fans such as myself anticipated the beauty that would’ve been Edward’s mind, Meyer did not go through with her idea of what was to be called Midnight Sun and instead created a whole different spin off told as if the Vampire was a woman. Twilight Reimagined: Life and Death I dare say is just as good as the first. Taking you into this whole new but yet familiar world again, we are brought on this journey of what would’ve happened if Edward was a woman. Of course because of the whole twist on gender roles, the story only goes as far as one book but it is good enough to satisfy the craving for a new vampire love story. It is quite fun juxtaposing Twilight against Twilight Reimagined: Life and Death.

You can check out the Twilight and Fifty Shades of Grey series as ebooks and digital audiobooks from eLibraryNJ and eBCCLS.  Also check out our previous blog post where we discussed Twilight Reimagined and other books/shows that were inspired by Fan fiction.  Don’t like Twilight, check out parodies of the novels written by Stephfordy Mayo on Hoopla; you can also read a parody of Fifty Shades of Grey.

Written by:
Sherissa Hernandez
Adult Programming Assistant

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