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SkinnyDippingIntoBooks

Skinny Dipping Into Books

I like the rain. I want to have a spring bookworming rain party full out with wellies—but not those Hunter Boots; absolutely not—, with yummy airy things like puffed pastries, meringues, mini fluffy cheese cakes, mousse dessert, macaroon, biscuits, crepe, and Earl Grey tea, definitely Earl Grey tea.  and Tillandsia. We'd have lots of "air plants". Lots! And We'd read, but not anything structured. We'd bring books, trade books, read out-loud, pass books around between sentences and paragraphs. We'd leave with books we hadn't discovered.

 

I like books like I like my Jazz; euphoric, dangerous, occasionally a bit manic, sorrowful, bleak, raging, mood-incongruent, mournful, unforgivingly ragged, symbolic in a quiet way, warm apple pie for the soul. Give me a Plath style. Yōko Ogawa, M. Roach,


Criteria: Not rated on likability of characters. Not objective. I like Moxie Soda; chances are you don't.


time spent in that before bed reading slot:

5-until blurry eye 4-Later than I intended, but I still kept to my extended, extended reading time 3-I really should have been to bed an hour ago  2-customary 30 minutes. 1-book. side table. eyes closed.


How are common themes handled?

5-With an aesthetic that repurposes everyday themes into something fresh. Think of Hole Celebrity Skin covered by Cat Power  4-there is a comfortable air of familiarly.
3-Deja Vu 2. No deviation from its mates  1. Devastatingly trite, redundant, and stale.

Where would you keep it post-reading?

5-Next to my bed.  4-it's the center piece of my favorite bookshelf 3. On my other favorite bookshelf, but it's a bit dusty over their 2-Great cheap bookends 1-It never made it out of the box marked 'moving'.


Emotional response-

5- Where is my teddy bear? Emotional-hangover 4- If I wasn't so emotionally stunted I'd cry.
3. Did James Cameron co-wrote this? Artfully contrived. 
2- calculative emotional manipulation. This was literally written by James Cameron.1- I…feel…..nothing.

Mechanics (plot structure, voice, presentation, word choice, sentence structure, characters, writing style, pacing, and consistency):

5-Chanel 4-Prada 3-J-Crew 2-Gap 1-Old Navy

Currently reading

The Complete Stories
Flannery O'Connor
I am No One You Know
Joyce Carol Oates
Unclean Jobs for Women and Girls
Alissa Nutting, Alissa Nutting

Painfully mundane look at the past

21st Century Dodos: A Collection of Endangered Objects (and Other Stuff) - Steve Stack

netgalley

 

.5 because all things that exist should get a little nod


The premise of this book was intriguing. It suggested a look at things that remain on the bottom of that cardboard box in your garage, basement, or safety deposit box because you are silly enough to think that Michael Jackson's Thriller will be worth something someday—it probably will, so smart move, because I tossed mine a decade ago.

A list, basically, but in paragraph form that looks at things we are suppose to have forgotten, but really haven't because they are so vital to defining a given generation, say Polaroids and audio cassettes, and thus the experience is just a reminder and not "YES! the 'iron token' I totally forgot about it".

It was the listless, endless drone of halfhearted, sorry little paragraphs that are dreadfully reminiscent of those conversations you had/have with your semi-sober grandfather that started with … "In my day…".

There is this inherent friction between the items referenced in the book because the bracket segmenting the decades covered within it are so widespread. Rather than a distinct look at the 40s, the 50s, the 60s, etc, this book just sorta splays them on the floor in a haphazard manner.

And then it just gets silliness all over the place. In the 'Readers' Dodos' they have isolated and sterilized the grandpa '… in my day'.

"cadbury's creme eggs- the old school ones that were larger and more chocolately and not so sickly sweet. I'm sure the yolks were brighter and if you took them from the fridge, a sheen of sweat would bloom on their crisp chocolately shells."
 
The problem here isn't with what is focused on, though that is not as finely tuned as it could have been, but with the formation and lack of ambition. This reads more like monochromatic stories shared at Springfield Retirement Castle; though this is probably underestimating Grampa Simpson. The lack of photos, the strange and flimsy organization and sequence of objects discussed, lay flat on the page and reading it is quite garish.

Yes I remember mix tapes, vas, cap guns, blackboards, audio cassettes , polaroid cameras, printer paper with holes, dial up modems, compact discs, walkman, projectionists , candy cigarettes,  the Concorde, typewriters, etc, but do I really want to revisit them through such painfully dull display glass?