Friday, September 21, 2007

first impressions, or: i want to get in a boat, just not this one

last time i visited the library, i told myself not to feel obligated to read everything i was checking out; there just wasn't enough time to properly evaluate each title before heading out. here's how things looked 15 or 30 pages in.

all for love
-dan jacobson

all for love reads like a brilliant syntesis of a story your history teacher told in class and the salty side notes your pervert know-it-all buddy added under his breath. the subtle narrative glee that comes each time a hint of something is fleshed out into tabloidable anecdote is enough to prevent me from continuing.

the twenty-seventh city
-jonathan franzen

i was reading this while a very bizzarre man harangued a crowd that i wished i wasn't a part of. not that i had anything against the crowd, just the bizzarre man. somehow the book seemed to be messing with my head as surely as he was trying to do, and the funny part was i still figured i'd read the whole thing. this fictionalized tale of st. louis in 1984 starts out oddly enough, immediately shoving its world into a surreal parallel world that the author seems happy to insist is nothing unusual.

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