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(Disclaimer: I'm a lefty. A big one. I'm sitting around drinking tea with Marx and Engels, romanticizing the working class and nationalizing the doilies. I absolutely cannot deny that my opinion of this book is hugely influenced by this).
So I saw that the other reviews here are all pretty positive and I figured I'd contribute my own stupid opinion.
I hate this book. A lot. I hate its philosophy, I hate the, slow, meandering way in which it is written, I hate the smug ‹bermensch Mary Sue characters (the entire chapter dedicated to showing just how perfect and faultless Francisco d'Anconia is actually made me desire a return to the story - which I also hated). I positively loathe that the characters' sociopathy is actually portrayed as a good thing to be admired and emulated by us common folk. I dislike that all the captains of industry are portrayed as promethean geniuses who built their respective companies out of nothing, apart from James Taggart and his gosh-darn looters (there is obviously no middle ground between these two character archetypes). I despise the 80-page speech by Galt (totes fine to leave society to rot and wither so long as you feel sufficiently aggrieved by it, my friends). I hate how often things are described as "formless" or some variant thereof. I hate how big the damn thing is (merely because it seems to me Rand could have said what she wanted to say in far fewer words and we could have used the spare paper for something more important - like writing better books). I hate that none of the mean collectivist baddies ever seemed to display much intelligence (probably a stupid thing to hope for given the book - but if I were going to write a doorstopper extolling the virtues of collectivist thinking and economics, I'd at least try to give the other side a fair shake). And I also hate that "Who is John Galt?" is not said often enough in the book to make a viable drinking game.
Actually, I liked the "... and if you wish to know why you are perishing" line. But apart from that one piece of text out of 1084 pages, screw this book.
(Secondary disclaimer: I know this was pretty fiery - but please don't think it was directed at the fans of the book. It was directed at the book and the book alone).
(I also apologize unreservedly for all the parenthetical statements).
While I tend to balk at those who use their dislike of a story's theme or moral or whatever as the meat of their review, I applaud you for at least mentioning that you hate its execution as well. "I happen to disagree with the author" is a long way from "this is a bad story", you know?
Also, I think it's interesting that you don't dislike fans of the book - especially after a, well, rant that you yourself describe as "fiery."
I like to adopt a "hate the sin, not the sinner" approach to these things. People just as smart as me (and much smarter) disagree with me all the time. I get that it's just a matter of viewpoints.
And yeah, the moral pretty much WAS the book for me. The story could've been Crime and Punishment but if it had the same message behind it I absolutely could not have enjoyed it.
Anyway, thanks for your input, dude.
Edited to clarify a point.
No problem. I haven't even read the book, nor is doing so exactly on my to-do list. God help me, a title like "Trees died for this nonsense" just grabs my attention.
Worst book I've ever read. To give context, I've actually read the entire Twilight saga. I know, what's wrong with me? The fact that people like this book astounds me.
I'll tell ya' why Twilight Saga is absolutely not better than this,and this is coming from one with very a very strict moral code like Edward Cullen
Firstly,this book is useful for learning the philosophy and figuring out exactly how to debate whether Ayn Rand is insane or not and whether laissez-faire really is superior to collectivism,whether lefty consequence-less morals trump conservative integrity. The Twilight Saga is useful for nothing
Secondly,this book actually has a plot even with the Author Filibuster,Twilight,....doesn't
Finally,as horrible as John Galt is,he seems dignified and can deliver a nice sppech. Edward Cullen for all his "morals" is an abusive stalker,Bella is just a spineless sex-maniac for Edward.The other characters are one dimensional or in the case of Taggart or Carlisle and Charlie don't get enough time. That's one despicable character against two.
Yeah,Stephenie Meyer can outdo Ayn Rand at bad writing any day.
"The Twilight Saga is useful for nothing"
It was deeply amusing, in an ironic sort of way, and that's the difference between it and Atlas Shrugged: Twilight is So Bad It'sGood, like Showgirls, where as Atlas Shrugged is just so bad it's horrible. I mean, how Mary Sue do you have to be to give the entire world a ~65 page/3 hour lecture. Even Bella, Mary Sue Classic incarnate never reached such toxic level. Hell not even even more suetiful relation, Anastasia Steele, of 50ShadesOfGray fame, ever topped that.
Likewise, at least the characters of Twilight try to be noble. For example, they all drink animal blood as opposed to human. You never see Carlisle destroying civilisation to dodge his taxes. W Hen all is said an done, the worst Smeyer did was to give pre-teens unreasonable expectations about the opposite sex. Ayn Rand gave us libertarians *shudder*.
Watching a collectivist try and tear down rand is like watching a deep sea anglerfish gnaw on the wreck of a submarine. I don\'t care for what\'s being attacked, but the person attacking it is even more unpleasant.
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