Under The Volcano November 12 2015, 0 Comments

Inspired by @jillmray and @myowngalaxy on Instagram to post the ten #mostinfluentialbooks of my life... The first one is Malcolm Lowry's "Under The Volcano". One of the most haunted and heartbreaking journeys you'll ever take, a booze-fueled day in a man's life, his slow disintegration as he tries to salvage his marriage and recover his dreams on the infamous Day of the Dead in Mexico. At once poetic, philosophical, exalted, existential, ironic, broken-hearted and lyrical. Some of the most beautiful and feverish language I have ever read. A twentieth century masterpiece.

"The puzzle the book presents has been unlocked many times over the years, but, as is the case with all great works of art, Volcano inspires and absorbs legion interpretations. It can be read as an overtly political, religious, mystical or philosophical novel. It is about damnation, or fascism, or love. It is a tragedy and, at times, a comedy (its flashes of humour are too often ignored). Its metaphors and symbols can be studied and catalogued, but their meanings seem to shift as they recur, or when they are returned to on re-reading. The book refuses to take definitive shape. It is so elaborate that, in a sense, it lives. If you haven't already, you really must meet it."

Chris Power in the Guardian