Wednesday, January 25, 2012

Atlas Shrugged


I did not realize this was such a controversial book when I started reading it. I was shocked that when I told people I was reading this book, how many people had opinions on it!

“It’s the most boring book ever!!! Don’t read it!!!” was probably the most common response.

“Oh you’re one of those. I wasn’t sure how to respond to that…I mean those can have a lot of different meanings…

“Ah, you must be really smart.” I think they just meant, “Oh, you have a lot of patience for really long, boring books that only crazy nerds read.” Which in that case, yeah that’s true.

But, I finished this book! It took me a month to read (I dedicated at least two full Saturdays to this book), but I am finished. All 1169 pages. So here is my opinion on the book...

I loved it. Yes, it was boring and read like a textbook, but Ayn Rand did not write this as an entertainment book. I think that’s where most people have issues with it. I think they expect a good novel when they pick it up, but really it’s more like a text book. (which is what I read most of time anyway) She wrote it to educate people about her philosophy and try to get people to think. The characters and story line are just teaching tools to help keep you interested and to illustrate the points she is trying to make. The characters are put through different problems that are difficult for them to solve despite being brilliant, and as a reader, I spent the whole book trying to figure out what I would do.

As I read this book, the issue was not “Do agree with her whole philosophy?” (Absolutely not.) It was more a situation by situation thing of what I believe. I loved the situations that are presented in the book. I was constantly reflecting and questioning my own beliefs and opinions as I learned about other perspectives that I never thought about. I repeatedly kept asking myself two questions: “What would I do in this situation?” and “What do I value more?” By the time I finished the book, I had learned a lot and it did in the end change the way I think about some things.

A few things about that you should know if you decide to read it…

1.It's long...if you didn't notice.

2. If you are Christian a few things might rub you wrong.

3. As I said earlier, the books was not written to entertain you. It’s suppose to educate you. 

4. There is quite a bit of sex in the book.

5. If you can rope someone else into reading it with you, do it. I was dying to discuss/debate different points of this book with someone.

6. I highly recommend have a big cup of hot chocolate/coffee/tea in a giant teacup and a really uncomfortable chair to help keep you awake.

So there is my take on it. Let me know if you have read it or are going to read it. I still would love to discuss with someone this book.

1 comment:

  1. I only read half of it so one day I'll have to actually find out who is John Galt??
    Anyways if you loved this book I highly recommend the fountainhead, it's one of my all time favorites. Not sure what that says about me...