Friday, September 21, 2007
Thursday, September 20, 2007
What's it all about, Alfie? Well perhaps it is about Alfie. If Chick Lit is a term used to denote genre fiction written for and marketed solely to women -- shallow, girl searching for Mr Right while shopping for the perfect diet and shoes--then I guess boychiklit or fratire would be exactly the same thing but written for and marketed to young men. So, cliché being what it is, boy avoids Ms Right while shopping for beer and sportscar. Don't all men want to be like Alfie? Don't all women want to be like Carrie? Only on TV surely. Is the gender divide so clean? Are we always so true to our stereotypes?
We're all from the same species after all, so surely I can enjoy a good, lusty read about boy things. Many of my favourite all time writers are male: Salman Rushdie, Umberto Eco, James Joyce, Cormac McCarthy, Peter Carey, Julian Barnes. Barnes'
Or is there something else behind the notion of a genre designed specifically to denote a book that is not substantial: maybe a bridge between a magazine, a TV show, and a book.
This is probably the time to admit that I haven't read all that much in this genre. Nor do I want to reveal just what a quality snob I am. It may well be an affliction associated with my gender (I do after all like shopping for shoes), but give me a book with too many girl-chasey gratuitous boob scenes (
Magdalena Ball runs The Compulsive Reader. Her stories, poetry, reviews and articles have appeared in many printed anthologies and journals, and have won several awards. She is the author of The Art of Assessment, Quark Soup, and Sleep Before Evening.
Friday, September 14, 2007
Brother Cain has choice words about My Inflatable Friend.
It's not yet a rousing debate about what's fratire and what's not--but we're getting there!
Tucker Max, you dog. Where are you?
Monday, September 3, 2007
Quentin knows how to construct a sentence, spin a yarn, and engage an audience. So I'm suspecting he's not the dropout he claims to be. I read Notes from the "G" Spot: The Uncensored Diaries of Slick F. Worthy, and it is indeed a slick, sick, and funny hunk of prose. Never mind that Slick not only has the predictable predicament of searching desperately for the legendary spot--but also, like most of us most of the time, he has a hard time just describing what he thinks it is. It's the pursuit of that ration of individual happiness the Constitution guarantees us the unrestricted pursuit of. That it evades Slick's detection isn't so much a surprise as the extent of sexual suffering and kink twisting he's willing to endure to find it.
You will want to peruse these Notes, particularly if: 1) you are a ninety-five pound weakling who dreams about being an NFL almost-ran with no money whose rough charm keeps him barely out of trouble, 2) you are bedridden and can't take a road trip just now, 3) you avoid casual sex for fear of STDs or because all your pickup lines fail but you're curious about what might happen if you actually went home with a hooker, or 4) if you wonder what sense Jack Kerouac might make or not make of post-digital society.
Quentin promises another Slick novel sometime soon. But he might also do well to brag that he's descended from that other Cain (not the Bible guy--James M.). Then he could do a noir story and call it The G-Man Never Asks Twice.