Tuesday, June 26, 2007

back page: the master and margarita

the master and margarita by mikhail bulgakov
translated by michael glenny

some masterpiece--this book stinks. the master and margarita was the worst experience of my recent trip to belize. its fantastical plot reminds me of some of the tales my buddy adam and i wrote in junior high. its funky, disjointed style reminds me of chesterton's the man who was thursday. and its ceaseless chaotic pouncing of immortal crazies on squeamish muscovites reminds me of the sadistic violence of tom and jerry with a slice of greek mythology. i'd like to blame this mess on the translator, but some parts of the book were actually rather good. if you choose to read this book, skip to the creative retellings of the life of jesus, judas, and pilate.

3 out of 17

i should mention that (1) the critics love this book, (2) rebecca the internationally-minded legal counselor-in-training loves this book, and (3) if you don't mind messy senseless plots, people say there's a meaningful satire here.

andrew david. "the wise mennonite grinds the master and margarita into the hard grassy slope." san ignacio town, belize.