I’m butt-cheek deep in Gravity’s Rainbow, so please accept my apologies for talking about it all the time now. I’m more than a third of the way in (300/776 pages), and it’s really starting to come together for me. It’s what I think about now when I’m thinking about what I want to read and what I hope to write. For the past nine years I pushed virgins into volcanos for Moby Dick, what I believed to be the Great American Novel. But now I see I need to up my game to ripping still-beating hearts that spontaneously combust when exposed to air out of the sons of my enemies for Gravity’s Rainbow.
This book has me convinced that, at this point, for fiction to be relevant to the 21st Century, it needs to deal, in some fashion, with one, some, or all of these:
- Godel’s incopmleteness theorem
- Heisenburg’s uncertainty principle
- Einstein’s theory of general relativity (the impossibility of simultaneity, natch)
These are the modern realities that we must grapple with on all levels (physical, metaphysical, realistically, metaphorically). If a book is put in front of me that doesn’t address any of this in some way, then it’s a waste of my time.