Saturday, February 11, 2017

The Crying of Lot 49

The Crying of Lot 49 by Thomas Pynchon  192 pp.

I haven't decided if I liked this book or not. It's been on my "to read" list for years and, while I can't say I was disappointed, I think I expected more. The story centers around a woman's search for the meaning of a symbol she keeps stumbling upon, a muted post horn with one loop. Oedipa Maas is named executor of the estate of her ex-lover, Inverarity Pierce. The estate includes an large stamp collection. Oedipa first sees the mysterious symbol in a restroom, then learns of the alternate postal system called Trystero. Oedipa then finds references to the Trystero in a play and delves further into investigating. The tale is a convoluted one and includes satirically named characters including Oedipa's therapist, Dr. Hilarious, Manny diPresso, Stanley Koteks, Mike Fallopian, and Genghis Cohen. The story ends at the auction of where Pierce's stamps will be sold as Lot 49.

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