This book is a just a huge jumble.
Although when looking at the index, it seems to be nicely divided into chapters, the content of each chapter consists of one long run-on narration of the author's stream-of-consciousness thoughts and memories of his experiences with several authors and aspects of literature. It would seem that the author hasn't clearly identified periods and genres and authors and styles and schools of thought and literary criticism in order to divide the work into discrete digestible chunks.
I know we're not allowed to attack authors, so I won't say I'm relieved he never taught me. Maybe it's just that I dislike lack of order, but really; ...- the chaos...
I could say I have read this, but I would be lying. I tried to read it, I really did;--several times, but it just seems like a rambling-on conversation, not a textbook of any kind that you'd really be learning anything from.
It seems to me as if the author just one day sat down, and started writing. Every day, for a long long time, he sat down and wrote and wrote and wrote and wrote and wrote. He just wrote anything that came into his head on that particular day.
One day, it might have been Elizabethan drama, another, it might have been Epic, or Romance, or lyricism; - whatever he would feel like on that particular day, he would ramble on about. On and on like a meandering stream.
Goodreads reviewers have been slammed for doing negative reviews. This book just makes me realize yet again, why we should not be fettered, why we should be allowed to speak our minds.
Negative reviews are not only a vent for frustration and rage because of time and money ill-spent, and because of a feeling of disappointment. Yes, yes, they can serve quite well for that as well, but, they also serve as a warning to fellow consumers.
Imagine I had read a review of this book before I'd spent some good money on it, that urged me to page through it first, and see if I was happy with the style and organization of the book; and I had done this, before buying it.
Imagine I had not just grabbed it and hugged it to my bosom in appreciation with a little cry of joyful glee- 'Ooh, lookie what I found! A nice thick, thick book all on the history of English literature!'
Imagine that I had done the aforementioned, but, before greedily stuffing the book into my shopping basket, I had gone to the trouble of paging through it, and had tried to read up on a particular subject or author in the book first. Had I done the latter, I might have felt a pang of disappointment. I might have put the book down first in order for me to investigate it further and look for reviews on it. I might have bought it nevertheless, but with some trepidation.
I do know, though, that if I had read a review that told me: This book is a disordered jumble. It lacks structure.
, I might be feeling less angry by now.