Novel Review: Don Quixote by Miguel de Cervantes Saavedra

Don QuixoteDon Quixote

by Miguel de Cervantes Saavedra

My rating: 3 of 5 stars

Maybe it’s because I had to read this in a hurry (for an exam this week) but what can I say — it was tedious. It has always been on my “to read” shelf, and I’m glad to have read it (I’ve always been curious about the windmill scene) but book 1… *yawn* I literally fell asleep half-way into it. I do NOT fall asleep when I read! And personally I DO NOT have time to take naps before my exam! “Cervantes!!!” *shakes fist*

I just couldn’t get into the language, the episodic plot, and the ridiculous protagonist. There’s something about when characters don’t listen to “reason” that really gets under my skin, and I stop paying attention. I ended up skimming through the rest of the the first book (and found a summary online). I hope that’ll be enough to pass my exam. *crosses fingers*

I will admit though, that there were a few moments [in book 1] that made me chuckle. Particularly situations surrounding Sancho (Don Quixote’s squire). The best was when Don Quixote seeing a number of travelers including 2 cloaked friars, believing them to be kidnapping a Damsel in distress, intends to save her. Sancho says to himself, “this is going to be worse than the windmills”. Classic.

The second book was a significant improvement from the silliness of the first (or, maybe because I was well-rested when I read it): actual plot, intelligent conversation, and character development. I may try giving this another chance when I don’t have to read it in such a hurry. It may help to get through the first book knowing that the second book will hold my interest better.

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