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19 February 2010 @ 08:08 pm
On Green Dolphin Street, Sebastian Faulks

I full-on hated this book and I will never forgive Britain's Top 100 Favourites for making me read it, never.

Outline: Mary is married to Charlie, an English werewolf diplomatist in Washington by day, alcoholic by night and day and all the time. Mary ends up having an affair with a journalist, Frank - not because her husband is a crazyass, which would make SENSE, but just because. Mary has two children towards whom she feels a strong flavour of cannibalism. Of note, she hates the idea of sending them to boarding school in England - they hate it too! - but does it anyway, for no reason I could discern.

Charlie suffers a breakdown, which is what happens when you use Grey Goose as your breakfast, lunch, dinner and five-a-day, and is posted back to England. Mary has a Very Tragic Last Meeting with Frank in which they decide to NEVER MAKE CONTACT AGAIN AS IT WOULD HURT TOO MUCH, and there's even (nearly) an aeroport-chasing scene. Then it ends. Thank god.

the faint aroma of honey, calico, half-baked bread, wild strawberries, of warmth itself

I will buy babies smelling of talcum powder, but that is IT.

the edible cartilage and soft tissue of the ear, which she had sniffed and nibbled like a rabbit


"What are those men doing?" said Mary.
"Not something that concerns a woman."

Yup, Frank is any woman's Ideal.

Her lips were very ... how would you put this ... three-dimensional.


The following three quotes I labelled 'retrospectoscope', because it was so obviously a twenty-first century view of events that happened ... whenever they happened. A long time ago. Before feminism and electricity, I DON'T KNOW.

This giant folly of pride, greed and quixotic ambition was about to receive, as far as Charlie could see, a cataclysmic judgement.

Vietnam. I didn't realise the US Government admitted that was a heinous crime against humanity NOW, let alone at the time.

Really, thought Frank, the panic over the identity of the potential vice-president was morbid when Kennedy himself was so young.

OH WOW, BECAUSE HE MIGHT GET SHOT! ... wait, that'd NEVER happen.

above the enslaved lands of Eastern Europe.

I know peeps in the old times hated Communism as much as I do, but 'enslaved'? Were the atrocities of the USSR well known before the Wall came down? Because, dude, I thought they couldn't even get Levis, let alone information in or out.

He had 'finer feelings' [...] but the intensity of his passion for Mary had banished them to some mental Alaska, far beyond reach.

People can't reach Alaska?! When Sarah Palin can see Russia from her HOUSE?

My hate cannot be (adequately) textually rendered.

Previously, on Book Glomp 2010:
The Lady with the Dog and Other Stories, Anton Chekhov
I'll take you there, Joyce Carol Oates
Middlesex, Jeffrey Eugenides
The School for Husbands, Moliere
Current Music: so long // guster
JRevalangui on February 19th, 2010 10:22 pm (UTC)
Your literary hatred is hilarious.
every Starbucks should have a polar bearscoradh on February 21st, 2010 10:08 pm (UTC)
And conversely my literary love is not. Life is WEIRD.
Sereniaserenia on February 20th, 2010 01:49 am (UTC)
Elizabeth has been known to smell like vinegar, when she gets really sweaty. She never smelled like talcum powder, because I never used it on her. XD

That said, it's also becoming a pet peeve of mine when I read fics. When people kiss, WHY do they always taste like cinnamon, or somesuch? Maybe if it had been specifically pointed out that they were eating cinnamon mints or drinking chai or something, but seriously, why do they have to taste like anything in particular?
every Starbucks should have a polar bearscoradh on February 21st, 2010 10:10 pm (UTC)
It's possibly the worst original sin in fanfic ... but of course, Faulksy is FAR too high and mighty to have ever come across something like THAT. He probably reads Homer on the toilet.
Sereniaserenia on February 22nd, 2010 02:32 am (UTC)
There are so many sins in fanfic (and probably amateur original fic too, but I don't read much of it). I wonder if my inability to write lately has stemmed from being aware of them? When I look back over my old fics, they are full of all those bad habits.