Book Review: Atlas Shrugged

Atlas Shrugged by Ayn Rand.
My rating: 1 of 5 stars.

Atlas Shrugged is a behemoth of a book that doesn’t know what it is. It wants to be a novel, but it also wants to be a vehicle for Rand’s objectivist philosophy. By trying to be both, it fails to be either.

For a long time I persevered with it, forcing myself to read on through the never-ending streams of dialogue that captured every minute detail of conversation between characters. I started to care about the protanist, Dagny, and some of the other characters, and I liked the premise. I wanted to see where the story went, and needed to feel like one of Rand’s heroic beings for reaching The End, but it wasn’t to be.

I don’t remember ever abandoning a novel before, and even forced my way through Anna Karenina about ten years ago, but after an excruciating stretch of dialogue that went on for dozens of pages, I finally decided life is too short, and gave up, without ever knowing the answer to the question, “who is John Galt?”

Unless you have to read it as part of a course, or are interested in objectivism, I suggest you steer clear, or read a sample first, before buying a book that you are statistically likely to abandon.

View all my reviews.

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