I’ve vaguely heard about Don DeLillo before from somewhere but never had anything to associate the name with. “Cosmopolis” is one of the (many) books on my course reading list this year and it was nice to finally be able to attach some kind of details and a face to a name that is rather well-known.
I didn’t know what to think of “Cosmopolis” initially, as I’m sure many people found as well once they began reading it. But there was a quirky groove that was quick and easy to get into. I loved and hated Eric’s character, but he was fascinating regardless of what he did. I was reminded quite a bit of “Waiting for Godot” by the way in which DeLillo decided to show disjointed dialogue and several trains of thought looping and scrambling as the characters spoke. It was like a character profile for a complex person that you’re still not entirely sure what to think of once you’ve finished, and that was by far my favourite part, as well as what I took out from this book.
Can’t say I was too captivated by the plot and setting however. Some details were a bit much for me, like the rat protest and the man who burned himself alive. I could tell it was a dark and satirical approach, but one that didn’t resonate with me personally. As a result, several of the profound thoughts and memorable lines tended to get lost in the writing, mostly because it would get wordy or dull and once the focus wandered off for a split second the meaning would be lost and so would the magic and connection with the profound ideas DeLillo was proposing.
Although not quite my cup of tea, “Cosmopolis” makes for a good, quick, but thought-provoking read that is worth giving a go. And if it makes you despise it or feel some kind of negative reaction that wouldn’t be a particularly bad thing either. This book taunts and tests the nerves and mind, and requires some patience and an open minded reader, one who will surely be rewarded.