Sea Rabbits →
This is directed toward the three of you who actually know me and/or care about what I think! Everyone else can go back to reblogging sad pictures of snowy highways immediately. I started a book blog yesterday, hooray for me. I’m going to post about The Quincunx this Sunday, so you will definitely want to catch that if you are among the microscopic minority of people who like me and enjoy the prose stylings of Charles Palliser (possibly just ohveda).
read and hold a book however the fuck you want. crease it, bend it, flex it, crack the spine, fold the pages. reading is meant to be a joy, and you should be able to read the words. love the book and it will love you back. if some ass is giving you shit by telling you not to fold the book over when reading, hit them in the face with that book.
also please stop giving me shit about reading on my little ipad and e-mailing me that dick article about the smell of books and its resemblance to vanilla extract and how basking in the bibliotrophic stench makes you a morally superior person. if you want to hoard books like a fucking freak who never got over flunking out of grad school, go for it, but dusty, moldy old books give me asthma attacks. i’ll cart my own library around on an sd card, and if i want your advice on the correct way to live i’ll ask for it. #BETTY HAD SOME BITTER BUTTER
"One of the two legends about the founding of Ankh-Morpork relates that the two orphaned brothers who built the city were in fact found and suckled by a hippopotamus (lit. “orijeple,” although some historians hold that this is a mistranslation of “orejaple,” a type of glass-fronted drinks cabinet). Eight heraldic hippos line the bridge, facing out to sea. It is said that if danger ever threatens the city, they will run away."
Terry Pratchett, Pyramids
"They who believe in the influences of the stars over the fates of men, are, in feeling at least, nearer the truth than they who regard the heavenly bodies as related to them merely by a common obedience to an external law. All that man sees has to do with man. Worlds cannot be without an intermundane relationship. The community of the centre of all creation suggests an interradiating connection and dependence of the parts. Else a grander idea is conceivable than that which is already imbodied. The blank, which is only a forgotten life, lying behind the consciousness, and the misty splendour, which is an undeveloped life, lying before it, may be full of mysterious revelations of other connexions with the worlds around us, than those of science and poetry. No shining belt or gleaming moon, no red and green glory in a self-encircling twin-star, but has a relation with the hidden things of a man’s soul, and, it may be, with the secret history of his body as well. They are portions of the living house wherein he abides."
George MacDonald, Phantastes: A Faerie Romance
#phantastes: a faerie romance
abraham lincoln: vampire hunter [1 of ?]
#abraham lincoln vampire hunter
I’ve been reading Abraham Lincoln: Vampire Hunter. It isn’t very good! I feel badly about that, because I wanted it to be good — I love Abraham Lincoln, and vampire hunters — but there isn’t much you can do when an author positively refuses to oblige your irrational prejudice in his favor. The most annoying infringement so far is the unsophisticated prose; the book reads like a decently-researched YA novel. I’m about eighty pages in and absolutely sure Abe’s going to have a sexual awakening any moment now, for example, which fills me with a kind of dread I didn’t know it was possible to experience outside the spiny fences of a prisoner-of-war camp. Also the vampires are pretty uninspiring! Abe learns of their existence from his lazy, illiterate, untrustworthy, and much-hated father, in a stupid story Lincoln pére babbles incoherently to Abe in the middle of the night after Nancy Hanks has been dead for months (it turns out a vampire killed her, slowly, for almost no reason, while Dad sat around with his thumb in his ass). Abe’s first slaying isn’t impressive, either: He summons the apparently retarded vampire who killed his mother to the family home, kills him, mumbles something Dirty Harry-like about making more stakes to dispatch the inevitable torrent of vampire avengers come to get even for their fallen comrade, and then wanders off. Meanwhile, Abe is experiencing FEELS, RE: SLAVERY. And he has AN AXE. Yes, I am afraid it’s that kind of novel.
I’m going to finish it because I started it, and also because I literally cannot wait to see how vampires will be responsible for Mary Todd’s madness (probably she will see a vampire eat a baby, or something, and we’re off) and the death of Abe’s sons. Apparently they are also responsible for the entire institution of slavery! That sounds exciting. Anyway, updates will be forthcoming.
Lincoln deserves a much finer postmodernist literary-horror tribute, in my opinion, but I suppose it’s almost impossible to outmaneuver the horrorshow of history, especially in a context like this one. (And to out-write Lincoln, one of the most artfully original prose stylists in American letters.) Maybe the movie will be better?
"Every bloody bookshop I’ve ever gone into or used online has been bombarding me with emails letting me know that J. K. Rowling’s “first novel for adults” is now available. Whoop-dee-fucking-doo; I don’t care. The plot sounds like that of a minor money-losing British movie starring Judi Dench, the prose looks boring, and the cover is dull — but then, I suspect they could have jacketed it in poo-flecked human skin and it would still sell by the truckload. I only wish they’d done a children’s version of the cover, to match the “adult” covers for the Harry Potter books that self-deluding grown-ups bought so they could pretend they weren’t reading children’s books."
#the casual vacancy
#the caustic cover critic
#things i wish i’d said
#undeserved literary phenomena
#the man who was thursday
The suburb of Saffron Park lay on the sunset side of London, as red and ragged as a cloud of sunset. …[I]ts skyline was fantastic, and even its ground plan was wild. …The stranger who looked for the first time at the quaint red houses could only think how very oddly shaped the people must be who could fit in to them. Nor when he met the people was he disappointed in this respect. The place was not only pleasant, but perfect, if once he could regard it not as a deception but rather as a dream. …That young man with the long, auburn hair and the impudent face — that young man was not really a poet; but surely he was a poem. That old gentleman with the wild, white beard and the wild, white hat — that venerable humbug was not really a philosopher; but at least he was the cause of philosophy in others. That scientific gentleman with the bald, egg-like head and the bare, bird-like neck had no real right to the airs of science that he assumed. He had not discovered anything new in biology; but what biological creature could he have discovered more singular than himself? Thus, and thus only, the whole place had properly to be regarded; it had to be considered not so much as a workshop for artists, but as a frail but finished work of art.
The Man Who Was Thursday: A Nightmare, by G.K. Chesterton
look what they done to my song, ma
#movies that are probably going to be terrible
#it could be worse
#it could be superheroes
After going through every single book in the house, I couldn’t find Winter’s Tale. I went out & re-bought it yesterday afternoon.
I am hundred and seventy pages under, and I want to tell you that 100% of the actors mentioned so far in connection with Peter Lake would be horrible sad clownshoes in the role. Peter is of early middle age. He is Difficult. You wouldn’t want to meet him in a dark alley. He is an anthropomorphism of all the terrors and hyper-realistic wonders of Helprin’s New York City, a place so rigidly, fantastically mannered it makes classic Woody Allen movies look like those old documentaries Warhol used to make about people sleeping. Peter is definitely one of the best, most lovable characters ever, and knowing that he will undoubtedly spend 114 minutes being called out of his name on film by talentless famous people is just as eye-crossingly unfair as it always is when that happens. But, despite the inevitability, here are some actors I think would make a great Peter: Viggo Mortensen, Christopher Waltz, Russell Crowe, Colin Farrell, and Brad Pitt.
Even though there is less than no chance that any of those men will get the part, we can still hope for someone better than blank-eyed gerbil-fetus monsters like Garrett Hedlund and Aaron Johnson. There is always hope.
The experience of reading the book itself is almost like eating something. It’s taking me ages to get through because I stay a long time with just about every third sentence, savoring its grammar and meaning as if it were iced with signification. As for right-wing propaganda, so far Winter’s Tale doesn’t seem to include any more than most fantasy epics, and it has significantly less than many of them (it’s hard to hold their patriarchal swoonings against the poor dears, lineal descendants as they all are of the mysteries and elevated language of the Pentateuch). The rug could be creeping out from beneath my feet without my noticing it, though. I will keep you updated.
In other news, I am definitely going to die before I finish The Quincunx, now more than ever, THE END.