Sunday, December 11, 2016
Youth is a story about a young man from South Africa, who tries to become a poet while living in London.
While he tries to be true to his dreams, daily life forces him to make choices which lead him to be less than the man he wants to be.
While he struggles with trying to find a balance between what he needs to do and what he wants to do, he suffers from a low self-esteem which makes it hard for him to feel adequate, both in his goal of becoming a poet and of trying to find love.
He is constantly comparing himself to others, be it his contemporaries or writers from a age long past, he never seems content with how he himself is coping with life.
His desperation and agitation make it difficult to succeed in anything, because he seems to believe that he doesn't need to make an effort himself.
He's merely waiting for inspiration to hit him, in the same way he is waiting for a girl to fall in love with him.
A very insecure and irresponsible boy caught in the body of an 25y old man, as so many walk the streets nowadays.
It seems that without anything pointing the way, most of them seem to drift aimlessly.
The story doesn't give a satisfactory ending. You don't get the feeling that he will turn out well in the end. It's just a foreboding that he will continue to doubt himself effortlessly until life decides for him due to his poor judgment.
What makes it a good story is that it is to the point and quite comparable to issues I've dealt with. Sometimes it does seem that life continues to go on and I lack any control over it. No choice, no inspiration.
Still, the gain the upper hand in these situations is what counts as experience and what makes you who you are.
I wouldn't have much patience with this bloke in real life. What kind of issues is he complaining of, anyway? No muze, no love, no talent.
All those things need work and dedication.
But maybe that's why this novel is called Youth.
The second you realize you need to work at it, you're grown up.