Jerusalem by Alan Moore is a novel that takes place in a small section of Northampton, England but in different times and planes. The narrative is told through several people, some experiencing the same events, and some seemingly disconnected from the overall storyline. Mr. Moore is known for his influential graphic novels, including Watchmen, and V for Vendetta.
I previously wrote posts about some of my favorite sections of the novel.
- 1280 pages
- Publisher : Liveright
- Language : English
- ISBN-10 : 9781631491344
This book is very hard to write about, or even to describe. It runs the gamut from exhaustive, to brilliant and everything in between. Moore’s mastery of language and images can often shine, but his overuse of similes and descriptions often tested my patience.
I had several attempts to start Jerusalem by Alan Moore, but on December 2022 I decided that “this is it” and trudged my way through the first chapter. I don’t know why it was so difficult for me to read that first one, maybe it was Moore’s way of testing potential readers.
Of course, I have no proof but I am not discounting that theory from that mad genius.
Even then, I had to read the book in 5 to 10-page increments, put it down, let it digest – and maybe even continue. Seemingly random passages often play an important role in the narrative, and the more I read the more I enjoyed it.
My edition actually consisted of three books, The Boroughs, Mansoul, and Vernall’s Inquest. My favorite was Mansoul, and I thought Vernall’s Inquest was mostly wasted on things the author wanted to say but had no place to stick it in – a literary circle-jerk which is mostly boring, unnecessary, and awkward. The chapters in The Boroughs are not a bunch of short stories, but they’re building towards something – part of a whole. However, the book gets unbalanced at a certain point and things just… stop!
While I certainly enjoyed reading much of it, I thought that after 1,200+ pages, that the ending was rushed, with three minor characters closing it. There were a whole bunch of loose ends that were never resolved, which I really wanted to find out about (did Mick Warren ever kill someone as he promised to a demon? What’s up with Princess Di’s photo album? And more)
Nevertheless, Alan Moore is a craftsman, and he’s doing his craft very well. But don’t let the existentialism and multi-dimensional chapters fool you. Moore still manages to insert some philosophical treaties, as well as political themes of systematic social and financial abuse.
Zohar — Man of la Book
Disclaimer: I got this book as a gift
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