Gravity’s Rainbow or Paradise Lost?

I’m giving very tentative consideration to hosting a group read of either Gravity’s Rainbow or Paradise Lost sometime earlyish next year. It may not materialize. It’s kind of likely not to, in fact. But this is a call for expressions of interest and votes for which work to do, just in case. So far a couple of people on twitter have perked up at the mention of Gravity’s Rainbow. Would you join? Would you consider blogging (especially if you’ve already blogged here)? Do you have connections with anybody with special credentials associated with either book who might be willing to contribute something so it’s not just me waving my hands up here?

20 thoughts on “Gravity’s Rainbow or Paradise Lost?

  1. kreed November 28, 2010 / 8:55 pm

    I would read either work with pleasure. Have enjoyed Ulysses and 2666 with Infinite Zombies. Love Gravity’s Rainbow (have read it twice so far, starting in the 70’s). I am not anyone special, but would follow with interest.

  2. Carol Lerner November 28, 2010 / 10:31 pm

    Gravity’s Rainbow would be great. I would subscribe but not blog as I do not have the credentials of your other bloggers. But I love reading them!

  3. Daryl L. L. Houston November 28, 2010 / 11:13 pm

    Thanks to both of you so far for the feedback. Carol, I don’t know that there’s much in the way of credentials here, but I understand your reluctance to blog. The jury’s still very much out for me regarding whether or not to take this on. Having people express an interest helps me out, though!

  4. Paul Debraski November 29, 2010 / 11:44 am

    I’ve been meaning to do some Pynchon reading (I was hoping to start him sometime next year anyhow). I’d be on board with Gravity’s Rainbow. I’d like to say I’d do Paradise, as it’s something I ought to read, but i wouldn’t be “excited” by it 😉


  5. Amanda November 30, 2010 / 11:33 am

    I currently have Gravity’s Rainbow sitting on my shelf. A group read would be a nice way to get motivated to read it.

  6. SilverSeason December 5, 2010 / 9:02 pm

    I have never read any Pynchon so will be interested in your comments if you go that way. It seems like a strange partner for Paradise Lost, which I have read, on assignment, in college. I’m not sure I would have read it without that pressure. It is one of those things I am glad to have done, but would not do a second time.

    • Daryl L. L. Houston December 5, 2010 / 11:36 pm

      SilverSeason, I’m simply looking for an excuse to reread Paradise Lost, which I studied pretty intensely in college but haven’t revisited since. Reaction to the suggestion of Paradise Lost hasn’t even been lukewarm, so I’d say it’s pretty safely off the table. I’m still debating whether or not to do GR; it all depends on time, current projects, and what happens for me in the next couple of months. Thanks for weighing in!

  7. Joann Karen December 6, 2010 / 10:26 pm

    Hi Again, I would prefer Paradise Lost but would read either. I don’t have the right credentials to blog, but have enjoyed reading Infinite Jest, Dracula, 2666, Moby Dick and Ulysses along with all the insightful blogs and comments about them posted here. 🙂

  8. Scott December 7, 2010 / 10:34 am

    I’m not master literati, but I’ve read Gravity’s Rainbow before and think I’d be able to do a decent job of blogging for it. Send me an email if you do decide to do it and we can talk about it.

  9. Jerod December 7, 2010 / 1:31 pm

    I have started Gravity’s Rainbow on several occasions but haven’t had the energy to finish. A group read w/ commentary might be just the ticket.

  10. Dylan Grant December 10, 2010 / 2:35 am

    Gravity’s Rainbow!

  11. Remy Oh December 13, 2010 / 10:17 pm

    I’ve been plowing through both and could use an excuse to keep me on track. Both are amazing, but I’ll cast my lot with Gravity’s Rainbow camp.

  12. JW December 18, 2010 / 3:53 am

    Gravity’s Rainbow. Because I’ve tried 5 times unsuccessfully to finish it. I took a college course on Milton, so I’ve read Paradise Lost. Infinite Jest is my darling, to finish this thought disconnectedly.

  13. KH December 26, 2010 / 4:41 pm

    I am always looking for an excuse to read Milton. I’ve read Paradise Lost quite a few times and every reading (for me anyways) modifies what I previously thought about PL. If PL is the next book, and you’re looking for contributors, I would be happy to be one of them. I’m a doctoral student and Milton Studies is one of my areas of interest.

  14. Sarah January 6, 2011 / 12:36 pm

    I tried Gravity’s Rainbow once, and I tried Pardise Lost once. Whichever you choose I wil attempt to read along too, but clearly I have form for welshing on these particular novels…

  15. Daryl L. L. Houston January 6, 2011 / 2:22 pm

    I’m deferring this read for now, as other things are going on in my life right now that I have to focus on. I had hoped to cram one of these (leaning toward GR) in before DFW’s The Pale King was to land on April 15, but it’s not looking very likely at the moment. Stay tuned, but expect nothing right away.

    • Infinite Tasks January 10, 2011 / 2:47 pm

      That’s cool, Daryl. We’re all looking forward to TPK, and we should have some fun together when it does hit the shelves!

  16. kevin April 20, 2011 / 8:11 pm

    I’d love to read GR again

  17. John C. Willett January 23, 2012 / 7:34 pm

    I am greatly interested in a group reading of Gravity’s Rainbow. I’ve wanted to tackle Pynchon for sometime, and I look forward to some shared insights and criticisms.

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