Don't get me wrong, the two stars are not a reflection on the writing. There are some fantastic pieces of writing in this book - mostly in the voice of the narrator. However, I cannot bring myself to rate it higher. This would be to say I liked it. And the condensed truth is that apart from the narrator - I just didn't.
I guess I also prefer books that have a story to tell that I can care about, but since TMM/Zauberberg is about characters which can't bring myself to particularly care about, their story does leave me rather un-affected.
This is my fourth shot at Thomas Mann, and my last.