The warnings signs were there and I willingly ignored em'-- I shouldn't've done that. Here was my logic: I read two novels by Coelho and loved them, so that pretty much means there's absolutely no way he'd write anything that sucks or could be described as pretentious and preachy (as many times as it was). The Alchemist and Down By The River Piedra... were the isht, so convincing myself damn near all of the reviewers on Goodreads were lying wasn't hard. Clearly, they were haters lacking the necessary depth to understand the story. I used my nifty Barnes and Noble membership (40% off baby!!!) and bought the book knowing it would be just as enjoyable as the others. Now I'm stuck with page after page of BLAH and nothing to keep me going other than the threat of not finishing my reading challenge and an unwillingness to waste 17 bucks.
The book, much like Linda it's protagonist, is suffering from a "lack of passion" among other things. She's got the perfect life, complete with a husband, kids, and all the money anyone could ask for. Unfortunately, none of this stops her from feeling disinterested in her life. The sexy front cover and first few pages would make one think Adultery is going to be the bomb...but it's bunk. Once you get passed the hilariously high levels of thirst Linda displays starting at page 24, there's really very little to keep a reader interested; you're kinda just dragging through her faux-reflection, boredom, and only mildly interesting flirtations with sadism. Even the chapters featuring her lover leave much to be desired. A typical chapter with the two of them consists of wine or tea drinking, philosophical mumbo-jumbo, and astrology. Like, seriously, who talks philosophy and astrology when you're supposed to be getting it in? Linda wastes a lot of time obsessing over the unhealthy thought process responsible for pulling her (and the novel) deeper into the mud. She toys with the idea of destroying another woman's life after some shade is thrown at a party, but who hasn't done that? Coelho tries to make things interesting by portraying Linda as a sort of mix between Frankenstein and his Monster, which is cool for a little while, but he ends up doing the most and beats you over the head with the same old cliches about darkness and light in everyone. Things get even worse when he tosses Linda headlong into the offices of three wack psychotherapists after she cooks up the dumbest revenge plot ever. I mean ever. I'm not gonna go into it, but I will mention he uses a Cuban shaman to co-sign her tom-foolery. Really?!
I wish I had more positive things to say about Adultery because I've loved other things by Coelho. He is a talented author. Maybe there's something great towards the end that will make all the rest of it worthwhile? Either that or I'll settle for being super glad to put it on my shelf. But in the meantime...
I'll try to keep this quote in mind so I won't become insanely jealous of the great blogs I see here. More to come in the near future.