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New York, New York, United States
"Life isn't divided into genres. It's a horrifying, romantic, tragic, comical, science-fiction cowboy detective novel."

Tuesday, July 19, 2011

A Dance With Dragons

We diehard SOIAF fans have waited five freaking years for this mofo. And yes it was totally worth it. Martin's greatest trait, in my opinion, is his ability to build atmosphere. One moment I'm in the searing desert realm of Meereen with its multi-hued pyramids, fighting pits and exotic foods. Then, just as suddenly, I'm transported to the Wall where the cold bites to the very bone and the dead rise through eternal snowdrifts.

George, if you happen to be reading this - sure, I'm a little annoyed that it took you 5 years, but this is a truly magnificent book. But I'm not here to quibble about the plot (for once). I just wanted you to know that I've been reading your book to a very dear friend of mine who is very ill and is unable to read for himself. He is the one that introduced me to your marvelous series, and I know he's been waiting on tenterhooks for the 5th installment. Thanks for creating a world so utterly beautiful and foreign, and for allowing me to take my friend there, even if for a moment.

Tuesday, May 10, 2011

Teaser Tuesdays

*a new weekly spot borrowed from the ever-brilliant A Girl Walks Into a Bookstore

Teaser Tuesdays is a weekly bookish meme. Anyone can play along! Just do the following:

--Grab your current read

--Open to a random page

--share two “teaser” sentences from somewhere on that page

Be sure NOT TO INCLUDE SPOILERS! (Make sure that what you share doesn’t give too much away! You don’t want to ruin the book for others!)

--Share the title and author, too, so that other TT participants can add the book to their TBR lists if they like your teasers!

“Cleopatra was in Tarsus only a few weeks but had no need to stay longer. Her effect on Antony was immediate and electrifying.”

--From Cleopatra, by Stacy Schiff

Thursday, April 21, 2011

Thursday, February 17, 2011

Contact High

Australian electro artists sure know how to spice up my morning. I just listened to Architecture in Helsinki's new song "Contact High" and I spent the entire three minutes, thirty-eight seconds slightly dizzy. It starts off with an '80s-ish guttery synth grunt, and I'm like okay yeah, sweet. Then this Chromeo-ish voice comes in and I'm like aw no. And then some weird rolling drums ease in and I'm like uhhh. And THEN, the chorus comes in, a peppy, sparkly dance-inducer. And then the Chromeo-ish nonsense comes back in. And then what sounds like 46 different synth loops blast me in the face. At this point, I'm so intrigued and so nauseous, I feel like I'm riding a violent rollercoaster soaring through rainbows.

I felt this way when Cut Copy came out with Bright like Neon Love (sadly, Zonoscope is doing NOTHING for me, btw) and when Empire with the Sun came out with "Walking on a Dream." I spend alternating moments loving the bright sparkliness of these Ozzie synths, and then being thrown into a spiral of confusion when they abruptly change the pacing with dirtier, darker beats/sounds. When all is said and done, I really do like this "experimental" music. It's fun, it's dancey and it's weird. Contact high indeed...

Thursday, February 10, 2011

A lil' Thursday literary/musical morbidity

me: i'm about to start my first virginia woolf
Eric: haha lemme know how that goes
me: ever read her?
Eric: nope!
can't say i have
which one are u going to start with
me: her first novel actually
someone left it at work
"the voyage out"
Eric: what's that about?
me: i find it interesting (and a little morbid) to read someone's work, knowing she offed herself not that long after
Eric: haha
kinda like listening to nirvana?
me: yeahhh!
Eric: or elliot smith?
me: good comparison
all those
Eric: or hendrix?
Eric: i'm sure there have been others
but ya, can't think of any off the top of my head
me: did hemingway off himself?
1Eric: if u call drinking urself to death offing yourself

Friday, January 28, 2011

The Children's Book

I think, at its heart, this novel is about the perils of being a dreamer. For those of this nature, it is far too easy to get caught up in your own thoughts, and thus, to ignore the damage you are enacting. The Children's Book focuses on the lives of the Wellwood family and their friends. In the late 19th century, they are immersed in the height of England's Fabian socialist movement. They believe in a society of free love, and a clean, simple livelihood enforced by literature, art and nature. Their children are brought up thus and the effects of such a bringing up have fierce and startling echoes down the line.

It is an eminently rich book, peopled with various fascinating characters, both dreamers and pragmatics alike. Shot through with poetic and literary references, a deep reverence for the pottery art of the time and a keen understanding of the various political/social elements of the period before WWI, it is a book worthy of the Man Booker nomination. AS Byatt has a supreme knack for combining such disparate elements, winding them neatly throughout a book, to create an effect that causes both rumination, fascination and an intense desire to understand the characters on a deeper level.

I, myself, am a dreamer. While reading, I've realized that dreamers and zealots have much in common. Both believe fiercely in a world that has yet to exist, and may never exist. It's the pragmatists, in the end, who, even through disaster and strife, have the gumption to keep on. But do they miss out on what it is to hope and dream? What it is to feel so absolutely impassioned by an idea?