Dec 31, 2011
What Narcissism Means to Me caught me with the title. It's funny and clever and has the occasional line that punches you in the gut - exactly what I want out of poetry.
This one is a good example, borrowed from here where you can read more excerpts,:
Like in the Chinese restaurant, it is
the perfect forethought and timing with which
the slices of orange arrive
on a small plate with the bill.
So, while you are paying what is owed,
The sweet juice fills your mouth for free.
And the fortune cookie too
which offers you the pleasure of Breakage
and then the other pleasure of Discovery,
extracting and reading the little slip of paper
with a happiness that you maybe conceal,
the way the child you once were
is even now concealed inside you.
Maybe you will marry a red-haired woman.
Maybe you are going to take a long journey.
Maybe a red-haired woman will steal your car and take a long journey.
Maybe you will be buried next to your mother.
And when the people you are dining with
smile and read their fortunes out loud,
and ask you to tell them your own,
you smile and tell them a lie,
and they laugh and think you are weird and funny and sad
and you know that you
are all of those things,
but you don’t tell them the truth
because you don’t trust anyone,
and you never have:
that is your fortune.
Dec 30, 2011
I Married You for Happiness is a slim little heartbreak of a novel. It begins with a wife finding her husband dead in their bedroom. The story follows her staying with him all night until she can call the coroner in the morning. As she tries to get through the evening, she remembers their relationship.
I appreciated that their marriage was a complex one and the story avoided treacliness. It's stark and honest and it'll make you want to hold onto your loved ones.
Dec 29, 2011
A Certain Kind of Death is a documentary that was so interesting and so fricking hard to watch. It tells the story of how bodies are dealt with when no next of kin are known. It was a fascinating look into how lives are investigated and how the vestiges of live are dealt with. The hard part? It's graphic - they show many bodies and loads of them are in awful, gag-inducing shape. Maybe I shold have just listened to it. 8/10.
Dec 19, 2011
Panic in Level Four is a collection of science articles that run the range from the ebola virus to the number pi to ancient tapestries. It's a strange assortment buut they all seem to mesh together - much like when you're a strung out exhausted senior and your socialism papers start referencing critical theory books and vice versa. (That's happened to everyone, right?)
It was a whirlwind tour through some very interesting stories. I will definitely be reading Preston's book on ebola. I like his writing style. 7/10
Dec 16, 2011
Dec 15, 2011
Black Hole is unique. It's a graphic novel about teens in an alternate 1980's. In this world there's an STD that turns the affected teens into disfigured mutant type creatures. What I liked was that the story wasn't epic and apocalyptic. It was much smaller - about unrequited love, being an outcast, and consequences . 6/10.