Filed under: Chuck Klosterman, Jonathan Franzen, The noobs | Tags: Chuck Klosterman, Eating the Dinosaur, IV, Jonathan Franzen, Sex Drugs and Cocoa Puffs, The Corrections, Val Kilmer
Both of these books were purchased in Las Vegas during my “vacation,” which just goes to show that I am, at my core, a book buying fool. The Chuck Klosterman book was something that I’d been looking forward to for a while. Sex, Drugs, and Cocoa Puffs is one of my favorite books and Chuck Klosterman IV has the most incredible interview with Val Kilmer in it (Kilmer is out of his mind!). I’ve already started reading Eating the Dinosaur and so far it hasn’t blown my mind. Of course, there are some interesting essays–right now my favorite is one in which Klosterman dissects the concept of time travel–but the book just feels a little too meta. This may be a byproduct of Chuck Klosterman’s increased notoriety. He’s a pop culture critic and, with his success, has essentially become a piece of pop culture. I think he loves this but it also seems that it’s something that makes him uncomfortable. I bought The Corrections by Jonathan Franzen because it’s just one of those books that you’re “supposed” to read and I often find myself eyeing it at bookstores. It only cost $3.99 at Borders on the bargain rack and I just couldn’t pass that up. $3.99 is less than what I pay for stuff at the used book store.
Filed under: The noobs | Tags: And Another Thing, Angle of Yaw, Ben Lerner, David Hajdu, Donald Barthelme, Eoin Colfer, Heroes and Villains, The Dead Father, The noobs
This is probably the most diverse group of books that I’ve ever purchased in the space of a week—Angle of Yaw by Ben Lerner is a book of prose poems nominated for the National Book Award a couple of years back; And Another Thing... by Eoin Colfer is sci-fi/humor; Heroes and Villains by David Hajdu is a collection of pop-culture essays; and The Dead Father by Donald Barthelme is surrealist fiction of the highest order. I’ve already started the Barthelme and I’m struggling. I chose to read it first because I thought I would move through it quickly since it’s less than 200 pages. But it’s so off the wall and different from anything that I’ve ever read (including the one short story of Barthelme’s that I read for class two years ago) that it takes me forever to finish a single page. In Housekeeping Vs. The Dirt, Nick Hornby says that if a book is no fun, then you should abandon it and find something better. The strange thing about The Dead Father is that it’s an incredibly difficult read but for some reason I really enjoy it. The book is sort of cool and has phrases in it like, “he took out his ancient prick.” I’d like to finish up with it, though, because I’m eager to dive into Lerner’s prose poems. He did a reading at my school and just blew me away with how intelligent he was. His prose poems are funny, insightful, and periodically about old-school video games. I suppose I could try to read both books at the same time but that would probably just make the going even slower.
Filed under: The noobs | Tags: Anne Tyler, Georgia Nicolson, Joshua Ferris, Louise Rennison, Nick Hornby, Speaking with the Angel, The Accidental Tourist
Why do I keep buying books when I haven’t finished the ones that I already have? It’s one of life’s greatest mysteries. At any rate, I bought four new books this past week. I got the Anne Tyler book because it was recommended by Nick Hornby; the Joshua Ferris book was purchased because I keep hearing about how awesome/overrated it is and I wanted to check it out for myself; Speaking with the Angel is pretty much a byproduct of all the Hornby madness that I currently seem to be experiencing; and Confessions of Georgia Nicolson by Louise Rennison is a YA novel (actually it’s the first two books in the Georgia Nicolson series compiled into one huge starter kit) that I bought because I’m starting to get into YA fiction and felt that it would be something easy and fun to read after all of that exhausting Lethem stuff.