Book Review: The Unbearable Lightness of Being

February 2008

Reposted from Goodreads because I don’t think that’s searchable

I don’t think I’ll do a very good job writing a review for a novel, so I’ll say that I liked The Unbearable Lightness of Being and list some of the things I liked in particular.

  • The characters are very easy to identify with, particularly Tomas and Tereza, but truly all of them.

  • The book has some very interesting philosophical undertones. In a way it reminded me of Zen and the Art of Motorcycle Maintenance.

  • The writing style is easy to read (though I understand it was translated into English from the original).

Though the writing was easy to read, at the end of the book I felt that I could read it again (more slowly perhaps) and pick up on a whole new level of detail that I didn’t before.

A related point: one thing I didn’t like so much were the abstractions and tangents that the author would invoke from time to time. I would sometimes wind up lost and, like I said, not really feel that I had grasped the full level of detail. But in general the discussions of the abstractions are what make the book interesting.