Are reading challenges worth it? What thousand page book is Dan dying to read? And what in god’s name is an “anti-library?” Enjoy!
About the Week’s Book
Here’s the rub, The Name of the Rose is one of the highest selling books ever. Ever! It sold more copies than The Great Gatsby and To Kill a Mockingbird, and yet it is hard to fathom how. The book is extraordinarily dense, so fraught with allusions and references that 50% of the its subtext sails quietly past, like a ship in the night. On the podcast we discuss a few theories how this could be. To us, it seems that Eco essentially wrote two novels in one—a detective thriller for the common man6, and a critical commentary for the 20th century post-modernist. At bottom it’s a medieval detective whodunnit whose principle characters are not investigators but 13th century christian monks. Church thrillers are not my jam, but I sure as h-e-c-k admire its commentary, and the man’s hustle 🧠.