I'm biased having a crush on Lethem after interviewing him, but excellent review Mark. And Chronic was not the easiest read either. It wasn't like Motherless Brooklyn which just zipped along and there was so much action. This was a character study of sorts and a hazily reflected Manhattan through Lethem's brilliant writing style.
Lethem... This book sort of hijacked me the way strong weed does.. it made me itchy at times, hyperaware of my liminal qualities, paranoid and, also like smoking pot, consistent feeling of having to pee. Not exactly sure how I would answer if someone asked me if I liked it or not tho still very much a fan.
Fantastic review. You are spot on about the treatment of forty-something women too. Kate Christensen is such a wonderful writer that she makes it seem so effortless and real. She tends to allocate equal time to the good and the bad in her characters and turns in riveting reads every time.
Wow - This is a fantastic interview. Informative yet intimate, and really useful, too. I'm going to email this link to my entire grad school alum listserve. Then I'm going to submit to EL! Thanks, Katey Schultz
A great read, thanks Gabrielle! I'm particularly glad you asked the gender question as I feel more and more that the only authors I read are men, unless I want to read more Twilight (I don't), and that literary journals sometimes perpetuate this. I'm definitely going to add this one to my reading list, even though I have to go the old-skool paperback route. ~Amy B
short or long; fiction will live on in our Kindle's imagination, and there mustn't be actual pages to show for it. the medium speaks to an on-the-go culture in need of something more toothy than OK!Magazine. If the lit mag is hobbling along it seems only right that we honor its essence in whatever form palatable. Great Q's and equally great A's. thanks gmm.
Thanks for the review, this book is going into my "To Read" shelf.
I think I agree with the both of you... and I am one of those devout C+H defenders. I respect Bill's quiet life, but it would be nice to hear a slight bit more from him. Regardless, I hope he is as peaceful as a Bob Ross painting.
I agree, but my main problem with the book was that it seemed to be as much about the biographer as it was about Watterson. A worthwhile attempt, but it had some pretty obvious flaws.
as much as Watterson wants to escape the public eye, it's totally worthwhile for an attempt to biography him
Some thoughts from Vasquez dating from the 2008 PEN Fest, and elaborating on his thoughts about literature and investigation. Much of this seems familiar to what he said on the panel I saw:
I'm automatically going to relate to a character who loves Whitney Houston as much as Kiran, but the best parts of this book are the ones where the relating comes as a surprise. There were so many unexpected moments of familiarity that do a service to the marginialized youths he talks about in the interview as well as the feelings of marginalization that we all feel, well past adolescence.
after reflection, yes. They would have tweeted it.
Sorry to recklessly misrepresent--I meant that you describe the genre _in part_ by how it's marketed--e.g., "variations of the prim-yet-sexy author photo, the artfully artless cover," yadda ya. I didn't mean to imply that you were saying that the actual writing had nothing to do with it.
Very insightful that you define the literary genre by the marketing tools used to sell it--a marketing genre perhaps?--marketing, the great art form of our time. . . .
Also a spot-on comment about how being a practicing Christian is the ultimate rebellion--I remembering feeling similarly as a boy in my Southern Baptist church--I would think, "If I really want to just chuck the world, I'll actually get myself dunked and go in for this craziness"--could never quite do it though--at heart I'm too much of a square. . . .
In my opinion, Tao Lin must be understood through the lens of his obsession with the music of Pneumershonic and the writing of the late Matt Jasper.
Way to go Tao!!!
Congrats Tommy. Well deserved
Yes! This is a book I want to buy.
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