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Date: Tue, 28 May 2002 09:20:10 -0700
From: maa32 
Subject: (urth) revelatory appeal

Well, this revelation/renewed appeal has happened for me with a ton of Wolfe's 
stuff.  I'll be honest: I didn't get Peace or the Fifth Head of Cerberus or 
The Book of the Short Sun the first time through - and I hated Return to the 
Whorl the first time I read it.  Now, after me tree revelation, (which I claim 
responsibility for, but the challenges and comments (especially of Nutria) 
helped me to polish into a theory) made me believe that TBOTSS was not only 
great, but that it was my favorite book in the whole world. I love to read it 
at random now - because it always confirms my grand unifying theory (no matter 
what you dudes say - and one or two people actually believe me).

The reason for this is simple: Wolfe always seems two steps ahead,but when I 
get something he writes I feel like a genius. In other words, I feel that you 
really do have to come to a key realization worked into the text on your own 
to appreciate them; I don't know many other authors who do this so 
successfully.  In a way, to love a work of fiction by Wolfe is to love your 
own ideas; he reaffirms my faith in my own mental processes and gives me hope 
that there really is someone out there who thinks like me.

I will say this: I had a hard time reading Peace the first time, and now that 
I get it, it is fun to read.  I will make this distinction: Zelazny's 
Chronicles of Amber were fun to read the first time through, and I read them 
every couple of years just because they were fun and they are still fun.  
Wolfe's texts may not have been fun to read the first time through, but they 
become ultimately much, much more fun for me everytime.  I really do like them 
more.  A lot more.   I love them; I foist them on my friends; I read them to 
my mother; I serve as a one man propaganda army; I caress them everyday. A few 
years ago they just sat on my shelf with the rest of the books.

Marc Aramini


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