Saturday, February 9, 2008

The Holy Terrors

I must admit that this is a rather interesting book to read, a little bit lighter than Swann and therfore slightly more enjoyable on that level. The characters are very eccentric and I do not relate to them on many levels, it seems, but that does not keep me from enjoying the book greatly. I suppose there are two things that really stand out to me that I want to discuss, The Game, and What they think.

The game is a interesting notion to me, and comes up countless times through out the story, or what we have read. Now the game is clearly something that these twins do for amusement, which has no set rules per se, though it is mentioned on pg 35 that "To disturb a player once this third stage had been accomplished was considered unforgivable". Other than that though everything generally seems to be fair play. Whether it is disturbing each other's sleep, physical violence, torturing small children, petty theft, nothing seems to be out of bounds.

What is the point of the "Game"? Well it seems to be just amusement for these twins. Sure, Elisabeth doesn't want her brother to become too slothful, but other than that they have no real goal besides their own entertainment. They both adopt roles and push each other in odd directions because it seems like they have nothing better to do, as if they are building a world of fantasy for themselves to live in. I can not find the quote but earlier in the book it mentions that their room represented some sort of world/city for them to create and control. Later on it mentions that Paul's half of the room in the hotel was the upper half while Elisabeth's was the lower half, demonstrating the power struggle between them.

Twice in the book it also distinctly mentions that they did not care what others thought about them, which I question the voracity of. They certainly do seem carefree and aloof, free from social structures and bounds, but I highly suspect that they care about what each other thinks, and I believe that is the root of the game, to get inside one another's mind and to screw with the other's perceptions of who they are and what they think. Ultimately I am fairly intrigued by this book and look forward to seeing how it progresses.


fehrer said...
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DJ Kessler said...

I don't think that Elisabeth and Paul are twins. I think she is older than him. But since you mention it, there is a band called "Cocteau's Twins." Do you know who their name is referring to?