It was at about 14% (who needs pages when you've sold your soul to Amazon) that I began wishing my longstanding conflation of Don Quixote with Dos Equis took a more tangible form.
I feel, quite strongly, that this is the sort of of novel that improves with beer. Partly because it reels, like a drunk, from episode to episode, but not insubstantially because the process of forcing comedy through the long, tight tunnel of four centuries demands lubrication.
Comedy doesn't travel well. You grasp this when you watch episodes of The Daily Show from 2009, but you really understand this, bone deep, as you read satirical passages in Don Q. Poking fun at literature so old your grandmother couldn't have used it for toilet paper? Not so hilarious.
- Satire sours over time, but some basic comedy is indelible. Like poop. Still about as funny or not funny as it always was, depending on how hilarious you find poop.
- Chapter names that announce exactly what will happen next are counterintuitively entertaining. Why do we demand surprise all the time? What's wrong with watching stuff unfold?
- Is there going to be any character development here, or is the point merely to move characters though space and time, like comedic chess men? Because that's kinda boring. And there's a whole, whole lotta Don Quixote left to go...