You Lost Me There
Eh. This got bogged down, I thought—Alzheimer’s researcher guy loses his wife in a car accident and writes a lot of grants in the lab and has sex with a student half his age and he doesn’t really love her and his best friend’s daughter comes to stay with him in a totally non-creepy-in-every-way scenario and she, like, sits on his lap, because everyone knows nineteen year old dreadlocked vegans are WAY into middle-aged neurobiologists, and then he pees on a boat that belongs to a Rockefeller? Because they’re in Maine? I don’t know. I wasn’t quite sure what was going on here, clearly.
I have read this so many times, and I don’t care. I love Alison Bechdel, and I love memoirs, and I love artsy-fartsy literary types, and I love family stories, so I love this book. I wonder if I will ever read Proust, one day? Do I need to ever read Proust, if I read Fun Home at least once a year?
Vaclav and Lena
By Haley Tanner
This was a very quick read, about Russian immigrants in New York, about kids in love. I thought the ending was a little toooo convenien (we’ve been apart for seven years, but we both still live in Brooklyn!), but whatever, it was fine. I thought a bit about the following sentences: “Maybe someone always wants more. Maybe everyone has a time when they realize they’ve been accidentally lying when they say, I love you, I miss you, you’re pretty, you’re the prettiest one, I never want you to leave.” I thought about those sentences quite a lot. I am still thinking about those sentences.
This is about Mennonites in Mexico, which is not a combination of cultures I had ever thought much about. I enjoyed the language of this book very much; it’s told in a really straightforward fist-person narrative style. I must have had feelings for the sisters in the story, too, because by the time they get to Mexico City I was all wiping my brow like “Whew! Glad they got out of that situation.”
You Think That’s Bad
I love short stories. I love short stories. I really loved this set of short stories, which were very weird and sneakily written, and also clearly required HEAPS of research because, like, one story is about avalanche research in Switzerland in the 30s and one story is about black ops, and one story is about a lady explorer in Persia (I happen to also love lady explorers) and one story is about the special effects master of Gojira. I found myself being very thankful that Jim Shepard had done all that research, because I totally believed every single one of those stories, to the point where at one juncture I was like, “Thank you, Jim Shepard! For doing all this research that I may read these delicious stories!” I’m going to read some more of his stories and I can only hope he’ll have spent as much time at the library for those ones as he did for these ones.