Thursday, June 21, 2007

Why I recommend "The Rise of Life on Earth"

by Joyce Carol Oates

this oates book is effing brilliant.

it read like prose so i thought it would be perfect for a hectic week of bouncing in and out of subway trains. anything to distract myself from my daily commute to Where-ever.

i couldn’t have been more right. or wrong.

frightening in it’s intensity, yet so sparsely written and easy to digest that the emotional whollop it packed hit me in the back end of my subconscious long after i’d finished it, this is an ordinary woman’s story through and through. and yet, there was so much more. bits and pieces of it floated back to me in my everyday life, like fuselage washing up on a beach from a plane wreck. i found myself checking to make sure that it wasn’t my plane that went down—because after a certain point, it felt like it.

it may be one stroke of paint across that canvas she’s creating, but it’s broad, it’s heavy and it’s vivid. and i never, repeat NEVER read enough fiction from, about or by women. it’s an endlessly fascinating thing, to feel it echoing in you as you are hearing it leap off the page from someone else.

and no, i’m not going to launch into the storyline. not even the ending, yes, that one, the one that left me staring off into space absentmindedly for the rest of the afternoon. i’m the kind of person that loves to cut to the chase for the most part but i really don’t want to give it away. you should unravel this profoundly disturbing brilliant bit of fiction for yourself.

light summer reading, indeed.

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