Monday, May 9, 2011

Reading is sexy XLV

(image credit: Adam Guzowski)

Well, I knew I would forget something if I waited too long to write up my reading. This book should actually be #4 if my list were strictly chronological.

9. The Divinity Gene by Matthew J. Trafford. This is a marvellous little (debut!) collection of short stories by a Canadian writer with a knack for balancing evocative realism with hints of the surreal, re-imagined contemporary folklore and religious imagery taken to its illogical extreme. I think I would have bought the collection for the wondrous title "The Renegade Angels of Parkdale" (fallen, physically perfect, angels run a hip gay bar in Parkdale) and the lovely and whimsical book design and illustrations by Jessica Sullivan alone. However the quality and originality of the writing would give anyone reason to pick this up. The titular short story's tale of Jesus clones or the unwanted, undead companion on a camping trip in Algonquin in 'Camping at Dead Man's Point' are inventive and impressive, but most impressive is Trafford's ability to write from various points of view, of men and women from childhood to old age.

10. The Jaguar Smile by Salman Rushdie. This book recounting his travels in Nicaragua in 1986, was Rushdie's first book of non-fiction. While the politics have become dated, you'll recognize Rushdie's incisive wit and it makes an intriguing introduction the Central American nation of poets, peasants and revolutionaries and its unique place in politics and history.

11. Little Lessons in Safety written and illustrated by Emily Holton. I bought this beautiful little book at the Toronto Comic Arts Festival. It seems a bit difficult to categorize, essentially being an artist book, like the graphic novel answer to the short story form. The words and picture are symbiotic. Holton is not only an evocative illustrator, she's a good writer. There's whimsy, modern day fables, humour and despair. I was tickled by her comic (for lack of a better word) about Karl Lagerfeld and moved by the broken love stories. Haunting yet delightful.

12. Mason and Dixon by Thoman Pynchon In which Mr. Pynchon's wild, Unfettered, Profound, tightly woven (and Sporadically, giving the Appearance, of Unhinged) Mind takes on the Lives of two Eighteenth Century English Astronomers, Servants of the Royal Society, now Best Rem'mbred for their Survey of of the Boundary of Pennsylvania and Maryland.... Though the language is suited to the protagonist's era (complete with unfathomable capitalization rules) and the narrative winding and non-linear, I'm 200 pages in and it's addictive. Only 600 more to go...

{Series so far: books read, more books read, books read, books read continues, more books read, I, II, III, IV, V, VI, VII, VIII, IX, X, XI, XII, XIII, XIV, XV, XVI, XVII, XVIII,XIX, XX, XXI, XXII, XXIII XXIV, XXV, XXVI, XXVII, XXVIII, XXIX, XXX, XXXI, XXXII, XXXIII, XXXIV, XXXV, XXXVI, XXXVII, XXXVIII, XXXIX, XL,XLI, XLII, XLIII,


adam said...

Hi That's my drawing on this post if you could credit me and add a link that would be swell
Adam Guzowski

minouette said...

Absolutely! Thanks for letting me know.