Bookish Discoveries of the Week (4/21/13)

I finally pulled together the Reading Essentials page, which has links to some favorite blogs, writers, bookstores, and general reading and writing sites!

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Random Links of Interest

Disappointment, Slow-Goings, and Technology as Distraction

I was pretty excited to find a copy of Ben Marcus’s The Flame Alphabet at the library recently. Marcus is one of those writers I keep meaning to read (along with countless others), so I checked out the copy and spent the week reading it. It’s a fascinating premise (children cause an epidemic simply by speaking–their speech becomes some sort of virus that only impacts adults) and his prose style is delightful, but for a relatively small book (under 300 pages), I was bored after the first of three sections. The narrator is the least fascinating character in the book and yet the reader is stuck with him throughout. I might still try other works by Marcus, but this was a disappointing introduction to his work.

Meanwhile, I’m slogging through Philip K Dick’s mammoth Exegesis. It’s fascinating, but it’s also 900 pages and a bit like entering the mind of a neurotic, paranoid genius. I cannot imagine the time and effort the editors put into pulling together thousands of pages of notes, drawings, and rantings into something that almost resembles cohesion. It doesn’t help that I almost always feel compelled to finish reading what I’ve started (as a young reader, it used to be worse, especially with magazines where I felt obligated to read everything on every single page, including advertisements!).

If I had spent the hours reading this week, instead of on my iPad and Goodreads, I probably could have finished a couple of books.

New Words / Phrases

  • salvific: having the intent or power to save or redeem (definition courtesy of Merriam-Webster)
  • negentropic: bringing order to a disordered or entropic system (definition courtesy of the glossary in The Exegesis of Philip K Dick)
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2 thoughts on “Bookish Discoveries of the Week (4/21/13)

    1. It’s partial enjoyment of being a sponge and taking it all in and partially this idea that somehow, the whole must be consumed by every one of its parts (I also liked to take things apart as a child and see their inner workings; I didn’t usually put them back together). I hate walking away from movies in the middle, too–I always have that hope that something redeeming will happen at some point or something will tie everything together in a way that makes me think the experience was worthwhile.

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