I'm not sure if I have a lot more to say about As I Lay Dying. For me, reading this novel is a very personal experience. I connect it with the death of my grandfather shortly after my high school graduation.
We knew my grandfather was sick, and dying, and the events near the end of my high school career really highlighted the change in him-my prom, graduation night, my grad party...it is as if each picture opportunity was showing us we wouldn't have him around a lot longer.
I look at pictures now and I am grateful I had him in my life as long as I did. My grandfather was an amazing man and of course I miss him. I am also glad to know that Matt was around and got to know him back then.
So yes, I associate this book with that period of my life. I had read this just a few months prior, and being that I had never really lost anyone close to me before, I don't think the full meaning of this book hit me.
Faulkner captures perfectly the hardship of dealing with saying goodbye. Anse, the father, seems to not be seeing sense when he tells his children and neighbors they have to make the trip by wagon and in all the heat to bury his wife's body where she wished it. They don't understand, but they don't have to. Anse needs to fulfill his promise to his wife, and does so whether his family agrees or not.
That is powerful.
I don't want to ruin anything for you if you decide to read this, so I feel like I need to stop here. I hope you will someday try Faulkner, and this title in particular.