I finished reading this book a while ago, but avoided writing anything about it. It didn’t blow me away and I’m not sure I would put this book on my “Recommend” list.
It was a good book. I can’t say it was a great book, but it was good. The ending was better than the beginning. I think “The Fountainhead” may have been spoiled by “Atlas Shrugged.”
Here’s the deal. The Fountainhead was written in 1943, 14 years before Atlas Shrugged was. Let’s just say that Ayn Rand developed her writing and philosophy a great deal in those 14 years. While The Fountainhead did show the beginnings of what she was trying to express, it was nothing compared to Atlas Shrugged. The storyline was weaker and her philosophical “punch” didn’t come close to what she felt in her later years.
I am attracted to Ayn Rand because of her unwavering and unapologetic views on so many things in this world. She says it like she sees it and doesn’t cave to the pressure basically everyone around her tries to impose on her. The Fountainhead did get into that, but the plot of the book just didn’t support it. Perhaps I haven’t been around the architecture field enough, but I found it somewhat difficult, if not impossible to grasp the idea that someone would feel as adamant as the main character felt about his profession. I get the idea, but I didn’t like the direction.
There were highlights of the book that mainly consisted of some pages in the middle and a few sections at the end. I talked about the middle pages in my “A Brave New World and The Fountainhead” post and won’t get into the ending sections here. I will say that they were spoken by Ellsworth Toohey, Gail Wynand and Howard Roark. They were good lectures and well worth the read.
I am still undecided if I would recommend this book. I guess I would say that if you are a Rand fan, definitely give this one a go, but if you are looking for some pleasure reading and just want to read the big daddy itself, go for Atlas Shrugged.