In the period that my blog was down (between mid-April and mid-May) Nigel also celebrated his 23rd birthday. I got him Zen and the Art of Motorcycle Maintenance, which I thought would dovetail nicely with his recent acquisition of a motorbike. He seems to be enjoying the book so far.
I also finished reading Two on a Tower and really loved it. I know it’s not supposed to be one of Hardy’s best pieces, but I don’t care. I liked it, and that’s that. Hardy’s brilliant writing ability was in evidence, but his style was not as melancholic as in his other books. The plot was less depressing than Jude and Tess, even though the ending was sad. If I had any grievances with the book, it felt like he really rushed the ending. It’s a pity, because it could have been a really, really good book. Also, if you get down to it, there was nothing very novel or unique about Two on a Tower. It’s really a straight up and down romantic tragedy. But it’s a Thomas Hardy romantic tragedy, and the way he writes makes it worth reading. Tess is still the best, though.
Now I’m reading something really different: Rebel Without a Crew by Robert Rodriguez, who wrote and directed El Mariachi, Desperado and Once Upon a Time in Mexico among other films. It’s very amusing. Rodriguez is famous for filming El Mariachi for $7000 – a feat unheard of in modern times. Even more interesting is that he sold his body to science in order to make enough money to begin shooting the film!