[The Octopus A Story of California] New à Frank Norris

  • Kindle Edition
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  • The Octopus A Story of California
  • Frank Norris
  • English
  • 14 January 2020
  • null

Frank Norris ↠ 9 free read

The Octopus A Story of California review ã 9 characters Ð E-book, or Kindle E-pub ↠ Frank Norris Tative on the state rate fixing commission An unremitting tale of greed and betrayal originally intended as one third of Norris' never completed Epic of the Wheat trilogy. Based on a true story of a violent conflict between the railroad and California wheat ranchers in the San Joauin valley The Octopus is a big baggy amalgam of naturalism regionalism sentimental novel political novel and historical dramatization Just because you may have heard of it being associated with naturalism don t be fooled This turn of the 20th century book has in common with Dickens or Stowe than for instance Richard Wright or even Stephen Crane It s really striking how some passages of this book feel so modern they could ve been written in the 1950s while others feel so old fashioned they could ve been written in the 1850s Although dated in significant ways eg straight up racism religious sentimentality it s still a fascinating document of its time and intriguing artistic effort OK I do have to comment on one style tic that is unintentionally hilarious Norris is kind of addicted to repeating certain descriptive stock phrases when characters or situations reappear in his narrative A charitable interpretation is that he thinks these word for word repetitions are leitmotifs or Homeric epithets something but they in fact are just plain corny and good occasions to skip a page The Octopus length and baggy episodic structure would have been for its time a feature and not a bug It s a reminder that novels of this time were analogous to seasons long TV serials rather than tightly paced feature films I recall HL Mencken half jokingly commenting that the prodigious length of Dreiser novels from roughly this same period were selling points book for your bang to pass a long winter In short I m giving this four stars because there are genuinely interesting and well done parts mixed in with the not so well done parts and because it s a pretty significant though fictionalized California historical account To enjoy it it helps to be a little detached and intellectualizing to think of it as an artifact somewhat rather than expecting oneself to be Frank Norris target reader

review The Octopus A Story of California

The Octopus A Story of California

The Octopus A Story of California review ã 9 characters Ð E-book, or Kindle E-pub ↠ Frank Norris Nd its domination The company controls the local paper the land the legislature and when the farmers organize to protect themselves even manages to control their represen. The Octopus A Story of California is a 1901 novel by Frank Norris I loved this book It was the first part of an uncompleted trilogy titled The Epic of the Wheat The Epic of the Wheat sounds so boring but I didn t find it boring at all at least not the first book by the time the wheat is made into bread and biscuits and all that kind of thing who knows perhaps I ll be boredFrank Norris was an American author born in Chicago It doesn t seem like he stayed there long though He also lived in California London New York and Paris he worked as a news correspondent in South Africa and as a war correspondent in Cuba during the Spanish American war he seemed like a very busy person Whenever I read anything about Frank Norris it says he was a naturalist writer so I finally looked up the word These are two of the definitions I found Naturalism was a literary movement taking place from the 1880s to 1940s that used detailed realism to suggest that social conditions heredity and environment had inescapable force in shaping human characterThe thinking was that certain factors such as heredity and social conditions were unavoidable determinants in one s life A poor immigrant could not escape their life of poverty because their preconditions were the only formative aspects in his or her existence that mattered Naturalism almost entirely dispensed with the notion of free will or at least a free will capable of enacting real change in life s circumstancesEmile Zola Stephen Crane Frank Norris Theodore Dreiser and Upton Sinclair are all listed as major naturalist authors So this is what I ve learned without giving a thought to whether I agree with naturalism I certainly enjoy that style of writing because I love all those authors The Octopus is the story of the conflict between wheat farmers in the San Joauin Valley and the Pacific and Southwestern railroad The octopus is the railroad its tentacles spread out into every aspect of man s life making itself even powerful and of course always richer The focus in the novel seem to be the power the railroad company has over the farmers and how the farmers are almost helpless to this entity The issue at stake is one of land ownership Along the lines of the Pacific and South West Railroad alternate sections of land had been granted to the Railroad Trust by the government The railroad invited the farmers to settle the land and cultivate wheat then offers the land for sale at first to the first occupants The price was promised to be between 250 and 500 per acre Improvements to the land would not affect the price therefore the land would prove to be very valuable to those first farmers As the novel goes on the farmers greatly improve the land through things like irrigation however the railroad has no intention of selling to the farmers at the original price When told that the farmers have improved the land they are told the presence of the railroad also increases the value of the ranches Eventually the railroad decides to sell but now the selling price to is be in the range between 2000 and 3000 per acre Thus begins the war between the farmers and railroad trust When the ranchers resolve to defend their homes and livelihood there are tragic conseuences of which you are going to have to find out for yourselves what they areI loved the book a lot of people wouldn t There is a lot of talk about wheat a lot of talk about wheat prices oh and a lot of talk about railroads The railroad seems like its the main character and it is a long book I ve often heard it said that if you re from California you would love the book Well I m not from California have never been there doubt I ll ever get there but I still thought it was a great read On to the next book happy reading

characters Ð E-book, or Kindle E-pub ↠ Frank Norris

The Octopus A Story of California review ã 9 characters Ð E-book, or Kindle E-pub ↠ Frank Norris This is a turn of the century epic of California wheat farmers struggling against the rapacity of the Pacific and Southwestern Railroad which will stop at nothing to exte. This book merits three stars based on historical interest alone It s not Norris s best writing by a long shot that honor belonging to McTeague in this writer s never humble opinion and it s further evidence if any was needed that the loss to American letters that Norris s death at 32 was immenseThe imagination that Norris evidenced in his six book career is sharp He saw clearly the world around him and wasn t about to let the Great Unwashed fail to see it with his clarity His infelicities of style were those that a longer career could have and probably would have beaten out of him Dreiser aside the other American Realists improved their writing chops with time I see no reason to suspect Norris of Dreiser hoodBut no amount of writerly tyro hood can take away the astonishing storytelling eye the man had It s entirely possible that we d have grown our own meellifluous Conrad right here in Murrika had medical science been only a little advanced in 1902 A major cultural what might have been momentI d say this isn t a book to read and savored and committed to memory but rather a cultural artifact to be appreciated by those interested in the culture in uestion