Tuesday, June 19, 2007

The Legend of The Thorn Birds (1977)

REMEMBER the legend of the thorn birds that first gripped and engaged our imaginations in Colleen McCullough’s The Thorn Birds when it was first published in 1977? It has been 30 years since. Thirty years ago, on July 3, 1977, this inter-generational saga made it to No. 1 on the New York Times list, remaining on the hardcover fiction list for some 59 weeks. For those who were too young too remember or missed the book the first time round, here’s the legend for your delectation:

The Thorn Bird
There is a legend about a bird which sings just once in its life, more sweetly than any other creature on the face of the earth. From the moment it leaves the nest it searches for a thorn tree, and does not rest until it has found one. Then, singing among the savage branches, it impales itself upon the longest, sharpest spine. And, dying, it rises above its own agony to out-carol the lark and the nightingale. One superlative song, existence the price. But the whole world stills to listen, and God in His heaven smiles. For the best is only bought at the cost of great pain .... Or so says the legend.

From Colleen McCullough, The Thorn Birds (New York: Harper & Row, 1977)


Blogger J.T. said...

I was too young to learn about the book. Then the movie was made (we are talking about the same Thorn Birds, right?) and I watched it as a teenager.

To most readers, the book is always the better choice. But I have to say that some movies do justice. :)

Tuesday, June 19, 2007 1:52:00 AM  
Blogger Eric Forbes said...

Though the book is always the better choice, I thought the TV miniseries did great justice to McCullough's novel. Get the 30th anniversary edition in August and tell me what you think. I believe you will enjoy it.

Tuesday, June 19, 2007 2:12:00 AM  
Blogger J.T. said...

Oh yeah, that's right. It was a TV miniseries. Been so long. :)
I will keep that book in mind. Thanks.

Tuesday, June 19, 2007 7:13:00 AM  
Blogger Obiter Dictum said...

I took your word for it. :)

Even though a belated review, I thought best to go in what one has digested well.

See my post 'Gastronomically Speaking..."

I reviewed the book with a twist to it.

Wednesday, June 20, 2007 9:37:00 PM  
Blogger Alex Tang said...

I have enjoyed the book when it came out and enjoyed the miniseries when I first saw it on tv. Recently I bought the 30th anniversary DVD and find myself enjoying it again. Richard Chamberlain did a good job.

Wednesday, June 20, 2007 10:29:00 PM  
Blogger Jordanfan360 said...

The book is by far better than any movie. I couldn't put the book down. I wanted to know what Meggie would do. I kept hoping she would snap out of her trans of becoming emotionless and deprive her daughter of love and attention she didn't receive as a child... Amazing book!!

Saturday, September 15, 2007 4:52:00 PM  
Blogger Eric Forbes said...

I too thought the book was way better than the tv movie. Definitely one of my favourite books.

Saturday, September 15, 2007 5:03:00 PM  

Post a Comment

<< Home