What I’ve been reading: The Name of the Rose, by Umberto Eco

The Name Of The Rose (Vintage Classics)

Umberto Eco

A fairly simple whodunnit wrapped up in lots of lists and boring church politics.

When stuck for my next read I turn to the BBC’s Big Read top 200. This list is a public-voted list of people’s favourite novels. It is heavily weighted towards kids books, because more kids read than adults and because, sadly, a lot of people stop reading fiction as they grow up and their favourite book remains their childhood favourite.

It is also biased toward books people think they ought to lie. There are an awful lot of old, thick tomes by Russian and French authors that I don’t think I’d have had a harder time getting through if I had been chewing them rather than reading them.

The Name of the Rose is a book on the list that falls into the easier to chew than read. There was a fairly good whodunnit in there. Though by the end of the book there was only one named character who had not been killed or exonerated, and naturally he was the murderer. I found myself skipping past large chunks of the novel hunting for double quotes that indicated dialogue and hence that the plot was moving forward. So much fo the exposition and description was done in the form of lists. Snooze.

I try to read a range of genres to keep well-rounded. But the lesson I learned with this book is that historical fiction just ain’t my thing.

I liked: The interesting layout of the library.
I disliked: The lists. The page-long, unrelenting lists.
Would I read it again? No, but I might watch the movie.
Would I recommend to a friend? No.
Rating: 2/5

What did you think of this book? Let me know in the comments.

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