Wednesday, January 14, 2009

Assassination Vacation (by Sarah Vowell)

I got this book for Christmas from La Wade and was very excited about it, as I, like Sarah Vowell, really like going to see morbid things like the mummified hand in St. James Church in Prague or Lizzie Borden's house. And I wasn't disappointed in this, loosely a memoir about visiting various relics and sites associated with the assassinations of McKinley, Garfield, and Lincoln. (Weirdly, I started reading it right after I'd visited the assassination site of JFK.)

I think the words "discursive" and "erudite" are on the cover, but they still apply perfectly, so I will steal them! I wanted this book to go into more depth, to be twice as long, to talk more specifically about (for instance) how Garfield died (since they thought he was going to live) and maybe venture into the assassination of Kennedy, since he was on my mind at the time. I also found the sporadic railing against the Bush administration almost anachronistic---I mean, I certainly agree with her, but the Obama Age seems like a whole new world in many ways, and it no longer seems to apply.

All that being said, I found it charming. And I hope one day that Sarah Vowell will take me on vacation with her. Sarah, if you want to go visit morbid shit, call me!


Blogger Aimee said...

I loved this one, too. (It's also awesome on audio, because her delivery is so perfect.) You should also put her latest one, *The Wordy Shipmates,* on your list; I haven't quite finished it yet, but so far, I love it.

7:15 AM  
Blogger mo pie said...

Ooh, what's "The Wordy Shipmates" about? I'll definitely put it on my list.

11:24 AM  
Blogger Scout said...

I liked Wordy Shipmates less, but I can also recommend Partly Cloudy Patriot. AV is the best of the bunch, though. I've been telling lots of people about it.

Wordy Shipmates is about the pilgrims, to put it simply. But like the real pilgrims, not the Charlie Brown Thanksgiving kind.

12:14 PM  
Blogger mo pie said...

AV needed to be twice as long, then! I will check out the other ones. Weirdly, I see that I've read a bunch of books in a row all by women. And I'm currently reading Cold Comfort Farm. Heh. I kind of don't want to break the trend!

12:28 PM  
Blogger toolprincess said...

I loved AV and yay your blog is finally back!!!

9:28 PM  

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