Saturday, January 19, 2019

Book Wrapup: L.A.

I took a bit of an unexpected trip to Los Angeles last week because my father had to have triple heart bypass surgery. My reading was a bit desultory, as in times of great worry I could focus mostly on random online games and not literature. But I did finish a few books during the trip. And, best of all, dad is on the mend and doing well!

The Parking Lot Attendant (by Nafkote Tamirat)

My notes say: Kind of enjoyable, but ultimately annoying and not grounded in reality. Maybe I'm missing The Metaphor or maybe don't have the patience for it right now. Another ToB disappointment. WHERE ARE THE GOOD BOOKS? 

I would characterize this as an okay read, though I didn't fully buy the characters, and didn't enjoy the ending. Also aych and I just chatted about the Tournament and I now think my main issue this year is that the library wait list is the longest for the top seeds with the most buzz, particularly There There and Washington Black. I should get The Mars Room and Warlight fairly soon. I may end up -- gasp -- actually purchasing a book because I am currently either 99th or 694th on the There There waitlist depending on which library you ask. 

True Porn Clerk Stories (by Ali Davis)

This came up in a thread on Ask Metafilter, I believe. This was a 2002-era online journal that I remembered highly enjoying at the time, and enjoyed revisiting as a time capsule of the video store and VHS porn era at the turn of the century.  It looks like Ali Davis has more recently become a playwright, and I hope to see more of her in the future. (Also this was self-published, so it ticks off a box in the Read Harder Challenge as well. Kismet!)

Born A Crime (by Trevor Noah)

The drive to and from Los Angeles was a good twelve hours, and the Extra Hot Great podcast can only get you so far! Friends had recommended this on audiobook, plus the South Africa aspect would give me and my mom something to chat about during our time together, since she grew up in South Africa (obviously, in a white township).  Well-structured, well-told, and gave me an appreciation of Trevor Noah that I hadn't previously had.

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