The right tone for Mozambique in the grips of the genocidal civil war between FRELIMO and the South Africa and Rhodesia supported contras RENAMO or London dur Events counterpoised with the moon landing are a central set piece of this novel, which is appropriate since every scene in this novel is as pitiless and barren as the face of the moon. As the character descriptions indicate the unreliability of human dreams and the danger of them is a major theme.
Sep 16, Jerico rated it it was amazing. This book is rough. Not unpolished the prose is quite smooth, as if worn but quite a few revisions but hard to finish. It reminds me a little of something by Pynchon: Its a lot colder than Pynchon and stays far away from resolution. I thought it might be a message novel at first, something oblique on its moral but I think this might be the bleakest book I've read in a w This book is rough. I thought it might be a message novel at first, something oblique on its moral but I think this might be the bleakest book I've read in a while.
Feb 04, Florita marked it as unfinished. I'm a bit fed up with all these postmodern novels that take a disparate bunch of usually thoroughly unsympathetic characters and bring them all together over some random connection, like they are all distant cousins of Benny Hill or all use the same haemorrhoid ointment or something.
Not unpolished the prose is quite smooth, as if worn but quite a few revisions but hard to finish. Simon Ings has delivered a storytelling tour de force that will alter some of your most cherished beliefs. Be the first to discover new talent! As the character descriptions indicate the unreliability of human dreams and the danger of them is a major theme. And so it goes on, this rolling story, with its dazzling, admirable narrative nerve, travelling through space and time, across continents and generations, dependent less on the usual principles of fiction than a reinvention of the past as though it were science fiction, informed by Milgram's six degrees of separation and the snares and brakes of late western capitalism. Amazon Drive Cloud storage from Amazon.
Nov 23, Jayne Charles rated it did not like it. Given the numerical theme of this book I'm tempted to contribute a few numbers of my own. It's got pages, of which about left me baffled. I speed-read a good 50 towards the end, desperate to have the thing finished. It made me laugh precisely twice. It's probably my fault. The whole thing is written with the confidence of someone who knows stuff, and who could probably teach you stuff if you could figure out what any of it meant.
It's probably best enjoyed by people who read slowly and ar Given the numerical theme of this book I'm tempted to contribute a few numbers of my own. It's probably best enjoyed by people who read slowly and are comfortable puzzling over every last sentence. People who excel at cryptic crosswords. I am certain that had I read it in this way, the last section would have bloomed into three-dimensional technicolour clarity.
But for for readers like me, perhaps lacking in the patience and I daresay intelligence needed, the experience was like chasing a bus, desperate to get on board before it disappears round the next corner, whilst not totally sure it's even the right bus. My mental notes were reduced to staccato non-sequiturs Anthony loses his trousers Need to practice those cryptic crosswords. Apr 24, Brock Ray rated it really liked it.
Not sure who named this book or wrote the flap description, but they should find new jobs. The writing is labyrinthine, but also poetic. Depressing yet compelling, the search for meaning is elusive at best.
Chris Petit is enthralled by Simon Ings's twisted narrative of the past 60 years, The Weight of Numbers. The Weight of Numbers describes the metamorphosis of three people: Anthony Burden, a mathematical genius destroyed by the beauty of numbers; Saul Cogan .
This is writing for the sake of the form, rather than a cohesive plot. Recommended if you like to chew on your literature. No me ha gustado. While the style is smooth and polished, the plot is rough, ambiguous and unfinished, or so it seems. Not to be recommended for amateurs of mystery and suspense —well, not quite true, I am an amateur of mystery and suspense— let's just say it isn't at all what you'd expect from the blurb. This a cold, deliberate, unemotional vivisection of the 60s, when the counter-culture was the culture; when we rejected the mechanical morality of the past —Good was obeying the Law and Traditions and Customs , While the style is smooth and polished, the plot is rough, ambiguous and unfinished, or so it seems.
This a cold, deliberate, unemotional vivisection of the 60s, when the counter-culture was the culture; when we rejected the mechanical morality of the past —Good was obeying the Law and Traditions and Customs , Evil was breaking the Law— and replacing it with sentimental morality —Good was what felt good, Evil was what felt bad— and not a small dose of morbid fascination for outliers and outlaws The legacy of that decade is impressive, don't get me wrong: This is a welcome "sit up and take stock" novel about fascinating, if unsavory, characters, written by an obsessive re-writer, always finding "mot juste" and "sentence juste".
Feb 08, Lucy Furr rated it really liked it Shelves: Seriously, that's the reason. Sometimes I have good luck with that sort of thing, sometimes I don't. I'd say that this time was a pretty good success. Quite honestly, I was expecting something a bit different based on the blurb on the inside, but I have to say, I think it turned out much better than what I was expecting. This book moves sporadically through time the last 60 or so years and outer So, I initially picked up The Weight of Numbers from the used bookstore because I liked the cover. This book moves sporadically through time the last 60 or so years and outer space to bring you snippets of the lives of a plethora of characters, who are all, in the end, connected to each other, sometimes in ways they don't even realize.
Even towards the end, new characters are being introduced and fitted into this web of a story.
Poorly executed, this could have been a train wreck of a novel, but Simon Ings pulls it off wonderfully and brings it all together for a conclusion that may not be as cut and dried as you'd like, but certainly does make you think. Nowhere else will you find a book where astronauts, outer space, mathematicians, professional wrestlers, rats, war torn London, the invention of the internet, people smuggling, eating disorders and electroshock therapy come together in such a fashion or even at all!
A very enjoyable read, one that take a bit of effort, but is well worth it in the end. Oct 11, Carl Bennett rated it it was amazing. As disjointed as life, which is not at all. The effect is exactly like life - you can't see what it's about at the time, it only makes sense in retrospect, then you can see why things happened, not just that they did. There are some similarities in this book to my own life, but thankfully not everything in the text has happened to me.
I liked this book from the start, from the first line. I don't understand most of the other reviews here.
It's simply disturbingly superb. Just a book dealing with the oddities and accepted things of our times. I'd recommend this book to anyone. Why they have it I don't know but I'm glad they did. Sep 11, Stephen rated it it was ok.
I don't know what to make of this book. It was lovely to read and I really wanted to learn about the stories of all the characters. But after reading through nearly three quarters of the book I was still being introduced to new characters and the plot was not yet linking up in any meaningful way. But I still kind of wonder how it ended and it it all came together at the last minute? Each chapter seemed to start to new storyline, but the previous chapters remained unresolved. I underst I don't know what to make of this book.
I understand that is a strategy to build tension, but I'd just had enough of the lack of resolution when I put the book down for the final time and sent it back to the library. Not so great a novel. I think he was trying to write something epic about the way people became more and more connected by technology and history and thought during the 20th century, but the language isn't quite up to it and the book ends up sounding overwritten and implausible. Mixing the characters up with the moon landings and the atrocities of post-colonial Mozambique comes across as a slightly clumsy trick, rather than the serious framing that I think it was intended to be.
The last or so Not so great a novel. The last or so pages are a little better and tighter, on the other hand, so maybe the book just needed stricter editing for its first three quarters. May 03, jenn rated it did not like it. Sep 17, Katherine added it Shelves: I wanted to like this book. I loved The Eye, a natural history so I thought I'd give his fiction a try. But, I just could not enjoy this one on any level. I found it confusing. I don't mean the multiple interconected characters and large philosphical underpinnings, I mean, I had to re-read sentences several times and still wasn't sure what the hell he was saying.
I might have plowed on regardless had it not been so damn bleak. If I'm going to have my will to live sapped I'd like a little somethi I wanted to like this book. If I'm going to have my will to live sapped I'd like a little something to make it worth it the pain. Oct 16, Beth rated it liked it.
The weight of numbers starts off fairly slow and sort of confusing. Somewhere in the middle of the first chapter I was wondering if the entire novel was about a middle aged astronaut and his issues with his wife I really enjoyed the authors style and each chapter is exciting and well executed. Mar 01, Kristie rated it it was ok. While the characters seemed interesting and well-written, I was unable to keep track of time and the correlations between them all.
I ultimately had to put this book down. I got about halfway through before I realized new characters were still being introduced, and I still couldn't keep track of the ones I'd already met. Here's how restrictions apply. From Publishers Weekly Math whiz Anthony Burden has anonymous alley sex at the height of the London blitz, which produces Saul Cogan, an eventual jaded-idealist-turned-human-trafficker.
Related Video Shorts 0 Upload your video. Share your thoughts with other customers. Write a customer review. There was a problem filtering reviews right now. Please try again later. I flipped through this at random, because like most fiction today they tend to be tedious, and have a hipster like bratty tone to them.
I saw a sentence about all his women being 'sex rabbits This sort of 'descriptive' use of phrase. Another random sample was: He goes on to use the word fkd-upness. One person found this helpful. There are many good stories here, but I'm not sure they should have been in the same book. Whenever the narrative gained momentum, it came to an abrupt halt as another character with complete back story was introduced. I know this was done to ultimately link the characters and stories through the logic of number theory hence the title , but for me it didn't work.
I became frustrated with a book that I really wanted to like and ended up skimming the last pages. I bought this book based on many rave reviews by reviewers in the broadsheet newspapers. I have to say that this is the most disappointing book I have ever read. I found myself getting closer and closer to the end WILLING the various stories to all come together for an impressive conclusion and was hugely disappointed with how it ended. It was like waiting for a big firework show's final explosions and, instead, there was a quiet phuuuutt of a damp banger!
Sorry Mr Ings but in spite of the quality of the narrative in the various stories it led nowhere for me: See all 3 reviews. Amazon Giveaway allows you to run promotional giveaways in order to create buzz, reward your audience, and attract new followers and customers.
Learn more about Amazon Giveaway. The Weight of Numbers. Set up a giveaway. There's a problem loading this menu right now. Get fast, free shipping with Amazon Prime. Your recently viewed items and featured recommendations. View or edit your browsing history. Get to Know Us. English Choose a language for shopping. Amazon Music Stream millions of songs. Amazon Drive Cloud storage from Amazon.