Monday, December 7, 2009

The Apprenticeship of Duddy Kravitz by Mordecai Richler (1959)

Just re-read this... and discovered again why I enjoy re-reading. The last time I read this was late high school, so I was the same age as the main character, Duddy, who we meet in high school and then follow as he makes his way into the world - frantically aquiring enough money to buy the land of his dreams. I remember despising Duddy and his scheming, crooked ways back in those heady teenage days when everything was black and white.

In my thirties, I feel much more sympathetic to Duddy... I pity him for his inability to see Yvonne's devotion as love; I admire his loyalty to his family; I understand his desire for the respectability of land; I recognize that he is emotionally crippled; I envy his energetic pursuit of knowledge.

Funny how time changes our perspective.... I wonder how I'll feel about Duddy when I am the same age as his father, Max?

From the back cover:
"Duddy Kravitz believed what his grandfather had told him: a man
without land is nobody. He set his heart on land, and if he made himself hated
along the way... he couldn't care less. Mordecai Richler's classic tale of
coming of age on Montreal's St. Urbain Street is an unforgettable story of ambition, dreams and family love."

Anyone else have this experience with re-reading a book? Like a character that you didn't like before? Dislike a character that you liked at first? Do you re-read? Why or why not?

1 comment:

  1. I really ought to read this...I never have. Marsha


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