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'.
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
WHAT A COVER, RIGHT?!
So, clearly this is a subject based book. Like Roach it explores some of the more darker, unique, and weird (not as much as Roach though) parts of society/history/life... etc. Unlike roach though this one takes a more serious tone. There is not many laughs (unless you are as morbid as me), but that makes sense, since i felt this one was more true to background/history/sociology.
There is everything for the wickedly morbid person here, and even the slightly disturbed history buff. Especially welcoming was the chapter on the ripper. Seriously, this is one of its main advertising points, and good golly did i enjoy it. Something about living vicariously through the collective atrocities of others that brightens ones day; in fact there is a quote about this which is the starting point of the book.... i thought it was weird and a bit grotesque until i bit into this novel and admitted it is quite interesting to read about murders... unless its you or someone you know; though i guess you cant read about your own death.
anyhow.... the close minded, sexually repressed, and anti women victorian age is not something i salivate at (aside from psych classes), but i must say this took on the subject with maturity, skill, and a depth of knowledge that only someone who really knows her stuff can produce. And Judith wins the award for comprehensive, because this is one thick, heavy, piece of lit. At times i put it down and interchanged it w/ some lighter stuff, because it was just too much to bite. you can tell by my update markers which portions i really didnt like. But, if you get over the hill and realize you are going at this one for knowledge, and maybe not entertainment (but i got both) then you can make it through. take it slowly though.
Something that was a bit difficult was the fact some of the chapters went back and forth between time periods, however anyone who reads Roach can handle this. It may be confusing for someone who likes his or her stuff straight forward with no detours to the past or future. With this i have to agree with others, this baby could have survived a heavy handed edit job, with eh, 200 pages less? But props to the author for keeping my attention that long.
Another plus was the obscure murders. im not that up on my murders, either past or present, but this book covered ones i hadnt EVER heard of. the detective work that was birthed from many of these crimes, as well as its fine tuning, was intriguing. Media was also a central part of this book. So, media, entertainment (of the public), murder and more murders, and detective work are nicely portrayed, explored, and intertwined, leaving the reader with a nice knowledge base of the topics. nothing really made this book set out on its own compared to others, though. it wasnt exactly original, and some people would day that many books exist covering the same topics. HOWEVER, this book was far more detailed than any other i have ventured to read on the topic.
recommended, but more for the studious among goodreaders, and the ones willing to put down some serious time reading a somewhat serious and dense book.
*same warning as with all my reviews... it is after 6 somewhere in the world.