wishfulclicking: stack of books (books)
[personal profile] wishfulclicking
Right. Skipped two days because I have a pattern of inconsistency to uphold, but on with going through the books of 2011:

44)The Marbury Lens. This book. One of my lowest rated ones of the year because it held such promise but really went nowhere and had some features that were awkward. (Plus there was the fact that the author had an account on goodreads so I just marked my stars and didn't bother with any actual review.) Marbury Lens is about Jack who, while on a trip to London to investigate attending a boarding school, receives a pair of glasses from a man and when he puts them on he's 'transported' to Marbury, which is another dimension that at times is suggested could either be the past or the future. Oh yeah, before this happens Jack is abducted by a guy and almost raped but manages to escape to his friend, Connor; after he tells Connor what happens they track down the attempted rapist, kill him accidentally, and then Jack hops a plane to London. On the plane, he's molested by some older dude and has to be saved by a flight attendant.

So Jack is obviously traumatized when he gets to London; so getting the glasses isn't a good thing, there is no magic moment where it seems the alternate dimension is a respite from his mundane to horrible reality. This near subversion of the standard alternate reality trope perked me up a bit except the alternate dimension is one horrible event after another--constantly hunted, humans are dying out and being hunted by former humans who now run around nude except for the trophies consisting of the scalps and teeth of their victims, hardly any women, low on water--and any danger presented is somewhat dulled buy the fact that dying in Marbury only means you can't go back and comparing Jack's reality to Marbury, well one is clearly better than the other. The ending just happens and the ambiguity of the reality of Marbury is never quite solved, which I didn't really mind except the journey felt pointless, none of the major characters died and the nugget of Jack's best friend, Connor, being on the enemy's side wasn't fully realized, Jack ended up converting him (physically and all) with his love.

Additional to the same sex molestation and attempted rape, Connor and Jack run around doing the no homo dance before they share their love with each other and the fact that other is the only person who knows them well; they are bonded by murder and friendship. Of course in the first part Connor invites Jack to a threesome with his current girl, who he later dumps before coming to London and he and Jack find what is presented as their soulmates in the form of two friends. One girl, I forget her name, the one who goes with Jack is just so perfect and gorgeous and crying because she can't fix Jack and he scares her but she loves him so much after just meeting three days ago. I don't really mind the tension between the two guy friends and even the whole 'I love you, man but not that way' and 'You're so gay' joking was not so jarring on its own because I accept that these two guys (late teens, athletic) would behave culturally in ways, but the whole plane molestation by the older dude and even the kidnapping (which didn't really have to go down the way it did) left me pausing at the book. My other complaint: the dialog ran together. Everyone started sounding the same.

43) The School Among the Ruins. Backtracking, early on I read The Dream of a Common Language and loved it so I thought why not pick up the rest of this poet's work, that didn't work out so well. This is the third collection I've read this year and it was better than the second but didn't really touch the first experience. Something I noted was the poems felt more distant from the subject and more energy seemed to be placed on spacing than creating standouts.

42) The Theory of Clouds I could create a stretched analogy comparing this book to the very nature of its subject but I'm way too tired. TToC follows people throughout time studying clouds. I like stories that follow different people with a loose theme connecting them so I did enjoy this. I'm reaching for an adjective to describe the feeling of realizing that it seems that the small sample of French literature I've read has employed much longer paragraphs than most American literary fiction I've read; but the flow is not harmed by that.

41) Arkham Asylum Madness Quick graphic novel featuring Arkham through the eyes of night nurse. Has an appearance by the Joker, Harley, and Ivy, and the Scarecrow but the story isn't that long or deep.

40) ABC of Reading by Ezra Pound. If Pound were writing today he'd probably be on Tumblr utilizing italics and CAPS to make his point about current literature needing to be news and calling people dumb in very long sentences and accusing them of bringing down the nation's conscience. Though this book was about poetry, and Pound favors a style of poetry that I don't, it was fun to read his ideas about reading and writing; the book contains a lot of truths and I saved a fair amount of quotes.
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wishfulclicking: man in black and white pulling back a curtain to show moving sky (Default)
needs to up my sock game

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