Hello, Pretension, let me introduce you to your soulmate, Total Waste of My Time.
This was so deeply painful to read. It was obvious that her idea for this book was thin to begin with. By the end, it was not just anorexic, it was on a drip and TPN with a mortician in the next room writing out the death cert. Why the fuck I was subjected to a piece in the middle written by Captain Cook or what the fuck ever - in a contemporary dialect, no less - I'm still not sure. On the other hand, I'm still smarting about it. As a general rule of thumb, if you are thinking about writing from the POV of a non-twenty-first century person in the way you think they'd think - DON'T. Ugh.
And, and. The sex was the worst thing ever. I mean really ever. I mean 'you beat Ian McEwan' ever. 'He made him soft again.' alskdjfhslkjfhd why would you go to all the trouble of creating several main gay protagonists and then write the sex like you're a representative from Bible Bashers Anonymous?
As for the 'romance' between Billie and Spike - well. (And wtf, 'Billie' and 'Spike'? I instantly think '90s tweenie popstar' and 'hot vampire'. Winterson can't have not realised those connections.) It was just like In Bruges, where the writers assumed fat jokes and dwarfs are funny on their own without any outside effort. Just because robots can't feel emotion and they're both girls ... it was like an instant pancake mix for Tragic Doomed Love. You actually have to SHOW us some of it. Even instant pancakes require, what, water and frying pans and stuff.
'Nooo - what do you take me for? But I'd rather be in a bar overlooking an artificial lake - one where the fountain comes on every hour, and where the trees are all pollen-free, and where you can get a great stake and go dancing at midnight. That's the life for me.'
Yeah, this whole ethos regarding the superiority of people who, I don't know, LIKE HIKING pisses me off. When Terry Pratchett stated that the whole of human civilisation was an attempt to get as far away from nature as possible, he never spoke a truer word. I mean. Hello? It's DIRTY?
Neither art nor love fits well into the economics of purpose, any more than they fitted into the economics of greed. Any more than they fit into economics at all.
Maybe because - and I realise I'm going out on a limb here! - economics and love AREN'T REMOTELY CONNECTED IN ANY WAY?
'I am designed to make decisions for the betterment of the human race,' said Spike.
'Thanks, but I'll mess up for myself,' said the barman.
So many people have said this before and better. SRY.
Previously, on Book Glomp 2008:
Middlemarch | Invisible Monsters | A Thousand Splendid Suns | Love in the Time of Cholera | Oscar and Lucinda | Kim | Breakfast at Tiffany's | Atonement | To the Lighthouse | On the Road | Brideshead Revisited | Zen and the Art of Motorcycle Maintenance | Bonjour Tristesse | A Passage to India | Three Men in a Boat | Vile Bodies | Prozac Nation | The Heart of the Matter | Jinx; Airhead | Doomsday Book | The Gum Thief | Choke