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Cheryl's books

Currently reading

The Collected Stories
John McGahern
Middlemarch
George Eliot
Omensetter's Luck
William H. Gass
Swann's Way
Marcel Proust, Lydia Davis
A Naked Singularity (Paper)
Sergio De La Pava
The Master and Margarita
Mikhail Bulgakov, Richard Pevear, Larissa Volokhonsky
Otherwise Known as the Human Condition: Selected Essays and Reviews
Geoff Dyer
Infinite Jest
David Foster Wallace
Samuel Pepys: The Unequalled Self
Claire Tomalin
Maps and Legends
Michael Chabon
Four New Messages - Joshua Cohen I was lured to this by James Wood, who included this in the New Yorker top 2012 books.
The first story "Emissions" made me feel old and cranky. Sex, drugs, computer hacking -- sigh. So much energy. But so unpredictable. Great ending.
The second one, "McDonald's" is so intricately metafictional that it became a confusing morass of embryonic concepts. Some bits here and there are terrific, but overall, I want to shake him: "Just say it!"
"The Bed", being the first part of "Sent", was wonderful - almost a fairy tale of the life of a wooden bed as it lived through generations. But then the rest of it abruptly yanks you into something else and disintegrates into surrealistic bizarre fragmented scenes of Eastern European porn industry. WTF?
What is it when a preoccupation with sexual themes so surely marks the writer as male and young-ish?
Cohen is an acrobat of words and ideas. This will appeal to lovers of absurdist metafiction on steroids, but I think it still needs some maturation and refining.