I'm highly anticipating this series' next book, Don't Call Me Thin!: A First Look at Being Underweight, by for-some-reason psychotherapist and counselI'm highly anticipating this series' next book, Don't Call Me Thin!: A First Look at Being Underweight, by for-some-reason psychotherapist and counselor Pat Thomas.
There's nothing wrong with the word "fat" or the word "thin" or the word "short" or the word "tall" or even the word "cancer." If you're of the opinion that fatness = unhealthiness, imagine a book entitled Don't Call Me a Cancer Patient!: A First Look at Having Cancer and tell me you still think Don't Call Me Fat! is cool.
How about a book called Don't Treat My Body's Neutral Descriptor Like It's a Curse Word!: Pat Thomas' First Look at Enlightenment. How about fostering a society in which fat people can't be legally discriminated against when they're applying for jobs, aren't called pigs and cows, aren't prescribed weight loss by their doctors for issues that aren't weight-related, aren't portrayed as lazy and stupid, if they're portrayed at all, on nearly every TV show and movie, and represent a more significant portion of the upper classes (who have better foods to eat, safer communities, and better access to quality healthcare) than they do now? How about only then measuring the healthiness of fat people vs. thin people? And, after that, if it still turns out fatness is the scary demon that we've been made to think it is, we still don't vilify the word "fat" if only because 70+ years of fat shaming has done shit-all for decreasing our waistlines. How about that?
Some of Thomas' books, like Don't Call Me Special!: A First Look at Disabilities, sound like they're well informed. I think she has all the good intentions in the world with Don't Call Me Fat!, but there is, and has been for several years, a movement to fight weight-based stigma by de-vilifying neutrally descriptive words such as "fat." I find it incredibly irresponsible of Thomas to write a book like this one without seeming to know anything about the war on, and for, "fat." You can't encourage people to stop treating fat people like shit while you're scorning the word "fat" as though it's the word "shit."...more
I love George Saunders' short stories, his articles, his interviews. His stories are brilliant. His writing about writing makes me remember why I l3.5
I love George Saunders' short stories, his articles, his interviews. His stories are brilliant. His writing about writing makes me remember why I loved writing, makes me want to write. I have trouble commenting on his work; I feel unqualified to comment on it. But we're reading Lincoln in the Bardo for my book club, so here are my thoughts.
Aside from the playlike format, Lincoln in the Bardo doesn't take risks. I'm not used to that in Saunders' work. I think Bardo would have been a good opportunity for Saunders to discuss not only slavery pre-Civil War but also slavery that continues to take place in America. I'm disappointed that this book doesn't go there.
The things I love about Lincoln in the Bardo:
- The playfulness of the format
- The Reverend's story
- The Barons
- The moon that everyone saw differently
- The chunks of monologue
- The 1860-ish incorrect writing
- That the ghosts tell their stories over and over
- Saunders' conception of the afterlife, the unfairness of it, the weirdness of it, the rules...more
What Alice Forgot is just kind of there. Which is frustrating, because the premise is so, so neat: a woman suffers a head injury and forgets the lastWhat Alice Forgot is just kind of there. Which is frustrating, because the premise is so, so neat: a woman suffers a head injury and forgets the last 10 years of her life, and she now thinks she's madly in love with her "new" husband, who, in actuality, she's preparing to divorce. There's so much potential in that setup. For some reason, despite how richly created the characters in this book are, I just never came to care about them.
Why is that? I mean, every character in this book is well crafted, and Moriarty's writing is excellent. And there's lots of emotional drama that's not overdone. I think the reason I never got fully invested in this book is because I didn't allow myself to. I kept myself at a distance, waiting, guarded, for the preachy moral of the story: And, so, women, let this novel be a lesson to you: Never let yourself become too powerful. If you do, you might break your family apart because Hubs can't handle you anymore.
And wasn't that the lesson in the end? Be an alpha-female, if you want to, but don't be too much of one? I knew this book would conclude with Alice, chastised and re-dociled, mending her relationship with Nick. But I kept hoping it wouldn't end that way. I wanted her to snap out of her amnesia, remember why Nick was no longer ideal for her, claim her badassery, and move on with her new beta boyfriend in tow.
The book does have its perks. It's well written. It's creative. It's interestingly arranged. It's not bad. What Alice Forgot, for me, is a decent beach read that could have been good literature....more