I'm definitely one of those people who is always skeptical about a book being made into a movie and that feeling is definitely being carried forward in the new Steve Jacobs movie Disgrace based on the famous book of the same title written by South African J.M. Coetzee. The book tackles the journey of Professor David Lurie who, in the wake of an affair with a multiracial student seeks refuge in the countryside with his daughter. While out for a walk with his daughter, they are attacked by three black men and his daughter is raped while he is knocked out and set on fire. What happens to these characters and the decisions they make is at the heart of this book. What I found amazing is the author's ability to take the reader into the very dark and ugly side of human behavior. At almost no point in the book are you rooting for the main character and yet at the sliver of a chance for redemption, you can't help but feel relieved for him. I love any writer who is able to take the reader out of their comfort zone and Coetzee definitely does that with this book. Just to add a little perspective, I am not the only one who thought this book is worth the read, those people in Sweden also found this book good enough for a Nobel Prize.

Whether this will be successfully transferred to the screen is a whole different bowl of pudding (you can check out the trailer here)! The whole black men raping white woman thing didn't go down so smoothly when the book first came out and to be honest, ten years later, I'm not even 97% sure how smoothly the movie will go down either. But in the end J.M. Coetzee is hardly a sugar and spice type writer so why should book or movie be easy to swallow? It's suppose to make you upset, force you to question circumstances and what you would do if you were one of the characters.

So, have you read this book? What were you impressions about it? Have you read anything else by this writer?

For those of you waiting for Coetzee next book, Summertime, the last part of a fictionalized memoir comes out soon (or is out if you live in the U.K.).

1 comment:

Gem said...

Thanks for this; I will definitely check out the book. I am extremely curious how the movie will play out.