cowboy me, 2.0: jose nazario beauty and the street


some book reviews

people probably aren't expecting me to write non-technical book reviews, but since i've had the pleasure of reading some fiction recently i figure i would share it with you guys. i don't normally read fiction, i'm normally more interested in history or other non-fiction. however, i found myself in need of a good book and these met my needs admirably.

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beth picked up a copy of Little Children on our way through o'hare this weekend. it's the story of several suburban couples as they struggle to deal with aging (well, as much as you age from college until your early 30's, along with the normal fears of life in general) and their lives. at this time a convicted child molester moves to the neighborhood, and he's a focal point for events in a few ways. in some aspects this is akin to the scenario if faulkner's a light in august in similarity of a single character's entrance acting as the catalyst in the story. at some points you feel for the characters, and in others you detest them or don't much care about them. however, perrotta efficiently and effectively creates a world which i found i could easily slip into as i read the story. the story moves at a decent pace, and you find it easy to keep turning the page. before i knew it the story was over, it had a somewhat predictable ending, but all the same it was enjoyable. not a bad summertime read. perrotta wrote Election (which was made into a movie starring reese witherspoon and matthew broderick) and explores similar themes: affairs, shells of marriage, and bittersweet endings.

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a couple of weekends ago i received a copy of Syrup, a very hip and delightful short novel. in this particular story we find our characters, scat, six, and sneaky pete all work in the world of corporate advertising. they're all in their mid-20's, more successful (even before the story really gets going and they find employment) than you or i were at that age, and before you know it it's a dream/nightmare life for them. barry creates a world where satire attacks corporations, the job world, and sexual ethics, all deftly told. definitely for the younger crowd, for people who view marketing with a strange mix of contempt and glee, and for people who enjoy a fast-paced story this summer.

both are bound to be hits, the kinds of things you'd share with friends.

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