Tuesday, 6 October 2015

Intros and Teasers - 'Ideal' by Ayn Rand

IdealToday I'm using a book which I reviewed yesterday. It's Ideal by Ayn Rand. As some of you may know I have a massive literary crush on Ayn Rand which I simply can't really explain so I'm just going to keep sharing her work and my random thoughts on it with you in the hope that clarifies things!
In print for the first time ever, author and philosopher Ayn Rand’s novel Ideal.
Originally conceived as a novel, but then transformed into a play by Ayn Rand, Ideal is the story of beautiful but tormented actress Kay Gonda. Accused of murder, she is on the run and turns for help to six fans who have written letters to her, each telling her that she represents their ideal—a respectable family man, a far-left activist, a cynical artist, an evangelist, a playboy, and a lost soul. Each reacts to her plight in his own way, their reactions a glimpse into their secret selves and their true values. In the end their responses to her pleas give Kay the answers she has been seeking.
Ideal was written in 1934 as a novel, but Ayn Rand thought the theme of the piece would be better realized as a play and put the novel aside. Now, both versions of Ideal are available for the first time ever to the millions of Ayn Rand fans around the world, giving them a unique opportunity to explore the creative process of Rand as she wrote first a book, then a play, and the differences between the two.
It was interesting to first read the novel and then the play, but I have to say I preferred it as the former. Tuesday Intros and Teaser Tuesday are hosted by Diane over at Bibliophile by the Sea and MizB over at A Daily Rhythm respectively.

Intro:
'"If it's murder - why don't we hear more about it? If it's not - why do we hear so much? When interviewed on the subject, Miss Frederica Sayers didn't say yes, and she didn't say no. She has refused to give out the slightest hint as to the manner of her brother's sudden death. Granton sayers died in his Santa Barbara mansion two days ago, on the night of May 3rd. On the evening of May 3rd Granton Sayers had dinner with a famous - oh, very famous - screen star. That is all we know."'p.13 (first page of novel)
As far as opening paragraphs go it doesn't give you a lot to work with, but it sets up the kick-starter of the action quite well. The scandalous gossiping-tone that this opening has fits with the novel's seeming message that what people say is often not what they think, want or do.

Teaser:
TeaserTuesdays2014e'She walked toward him. She stood, looking at him her eyes pleading; she stood in the midst of paintings that were a dozen of mirrors tearing her body into dozens of splinters of reflections, throwing back at her her pale eyes, her white arms, her lips, her breasts, her bluish shoulders, mirrors playing with her body, coloring it in drapes of flaming scarlet, in tunics of luminous blue, while she stood, black and slender, only her hair alike all through the room, like dozens of pale gold stars scattered around them, filling the studio, rising from their feet to above their heads.' p. 76-77

I know this is a really long teaser but I simply had to share all of it. At this point in the story Kay Gonda has tried to find shelter with a fan who's an artist and says he knows her. She is surrounded by his painting which are all of her and yet he doesn't seem to know her. It's quite heartbreaking, really. Also, this is just a brilliant example of how beautifully descriptive Rand's writing can be. So vivid and clear.

22 comments:

  1. I've not read any Rand before, but I want to. Sounds like beautiful writing.

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    1. Do give Ayn Rand a try, she was an amazing author! Thanks for commenting :)

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  2. I really like both the intro and the teaser! I've never read Rand and like the idea of starting with a novella.

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    1. It would definitely be easier to start here than with 'Atlas Shrugged' or 'The Fountainhead', which are great but absolutely massive! Thanks for commenting :)

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  3. I liked that intro and sadly, I have never tried this author.

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    1. It can be hard to get into Rand and I actually had to go into four different book shops to find this book, which is ridiculous! Thanks for commenting :)

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  4. I've been meaning to read Ayn Rand. I have Atlas Shrugged on my coffee table waiting patiently but it's so huge — it's daunting. Here's my TT: http://wp.me/p4DMf0-X7

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    1. It's definitely scary with how enormous her books are. I'm still working on 'Atlas Shrugged' but 'The Fountainhead' was definitely worth the struggle! Thanks for commenting :)

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  5. Oh, wow, I must read this one! I have only read two books by this author: The Fountainhead and Atlas Shrugged. And that was many years ago.

    I wonder how I would feel about those books now? Perhaps reading this one would help me feel what I felt then.

    Thanks for sharing, and here's mine: “THE LAKE HOUSE”

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    1. It's always interesting to go back to childhood/youth books and see how your opinions have changed! Ideal is a little bit less "developed" since it's earlier work, but I enjoyed it! Thanks for commenting :)

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  6. Ooooh, I didn't know that this was available, Juli! It's been awhile since I've read any of her work (during college), but I definitely need to check this one out; thanks for sharing the intro!

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    1. It came as a complete surprise to me and then I had to go hunt it down of course! Do have a look for it! Thanks for commenting :)

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  7. I like the first paragraph and agree with you on the beauty of the writing. I can't heard about someone finding a new Ayn Rand novel. I'll have to let my son know as he's a fan of her work. Thanks for sharing.

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    1. I think as such it was known it existed, it just hadn't been properly published before! Oh do let me know whether he likes it if he decides to pick it up! Thanks for commenting :)

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  8. Wow - this sounds fantastic! I loved both Atlas Shrugged and The Fountainhead and didn't realize she had ever written this one. Adding to the TBR and thanks for sharing.

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    1. I'm so happy to be finding other Rand-fans because too often people start politicizing everything and it becomes impossible to just enjoy her writing! Do check this one out. Thanks for commenting :)

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  9. I love the writing, especially in the teaser you shared. The opening does set the tone well, I think, from what you've described of the novel. I'd be curious to read this and then see the play.

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    1. I would love to see a staging of the play, although it's quite different from the novel in some ways! Thanks for commenting :)

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  10. I'm glad you showed Rand some love! I've never cared about the politicization of her novels, but I always really liked the themes and the sweeping stories she created. Granted, they're all pretty much one thousand pages of Anthem, but I've still always loved the ride!!! Go Howard Roark!

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    1. People always seem to have a lot of opinions about Rands 'ideas' and 'theories' but neglect just looking at the beauty of her writing. As you say, her stories are sweeping and enormous, but so worth it. Howard Roark is one of my favourite characters from the 20th century! Thanks for commenting :)

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