Thursday, June 29, 2006
Death to Enthusiasm!
This book killed my spirit. It took me two weeks to read. (Well, ok, I did take 2 days to read 12 Sharp.) I had to force myself to keep going. It became a chore. I didn't even want to read at night. I would distract myself with a skill I haven't exhibited since my "Cultural Geography" course freshman year in college. But I plodded on, sure, just sure, that it would all be worth it in the end. Positive that the meandering plot and wandering tangents would all be puposefully tied up in a satisfying package at the end. I am SO naive. But what a great title! Portman can certainly name things, whether they be books or bands (which play an amusing role in this book), with definitive panache.
Right. Basic plot. Sigh. I'm so unmotivated for this. Drudgery. (Snap out of it Jac...). Ok. Kid's father is dead - under suspicious circumstances (he kicked off awhile ago, so there isn't as much angst as mystery). Kid finds dad's old books which starts a whole conspiracy theory thing. Kid has developed elaborate schemes not to be beat up on at school (ok, those are kinda funny). Kid also happens to have a band. Which they rename about every week. That's the highlight. It was unsatisfying. To me. At the end it was: Here is the place where I learn a lesson. This is what I learned. blah, blah, blah. It was rather tongue-in-cheek, but it just really didn't do it for me. I wish it had. It totally derailed my reading quota. That, and I really HATE Catcher In the Rye, which is talked about endlessly. I read it one and a half times in high school. Even acknowledging that HS tends to kill most books (I don't do well with forced reading), I have no desire to relive that book.
I say! (do read that with the proper accent.) The best bits are at the end with the 'Bandography,' where you'll find a listing of the different names applied to the main character's band throughout the novel, and the glossary, where things are defined in their very own unique way. Read those, and you should be good.
Please note that there is a lot of messing around depicted in detail (though not graphic if we're splitting hairs). +14