I must make a confession here. While the book was certainly witty, and laugh-out-loud funny in some places, I think I was looking for something more.I must make a confession here. While the book was certainly witty, and laugh-out-loud funny in some places, I think I was looking for something more. I was expecting more academic sociology--incisive commentary and analysis of society's excesses--and I got, well, light observational essays a la David Sedaris. Unfair? Maybe. Stupid of me? Guilty! Did I miss the point? Oh my yes, and we all know I'm very good at that. But I read an entire bookful of David Rakoff jetting to private islands and attending fashion shows, all with a "Gawsh, shucks, I shure don't belong here with you fancy folks," wink and nod, and I do believe the most insightful morsel I found was his decrying of Barbara Bush for her insensitive comments about televising the return of deceased soldiers from Iraq. That, and the fact that he seems to be against the practice of cryogenics. I'm against Barbara Bush and cryogenics, too, but I would have appreciated a little more depth. I'm shallow enough as it is.
But then what do I know? Rakoff is a truly engaging and enjoyable author; I simply had incorrect expectations. Don't Get Too Comfortable was written pre-Great Recession, so my reading it now--amidst the rubble, as it were--doubtless colors my opinion. Enjoy it for what it is, and be careful where you choose to get your remains frozen after you die! ...more
More chilling works by a 20th-century master of the genre. Matheson is a primary influence on modern horror--not just literary, but in cinema and teleMore chilling works by a 20th-century master of the genre. Matheson is a primary influence on modern horror--not just literary, but in cinema and television (Matheson wrote prolifically for "The Twilight Zone" and the title story of this collection was adapted for that show).
If your only Matheson experience so far has been Will Smith in "I Am Legend," you owe it to yourself to expand your horizons. This collection is a great introduction to typical Matheson themes: ordinary folks in horrifying situations, bewilderingly strange children, the dire consequences of misplaced trust, self-identity, anger and existential crisis.
From "Nightmare at 20,000 Feet" to "Prey," Matheson's incisively drawn characters and tautly paced tales will hold you and haunt you long after you've closed the book. ...more