The first book of this trilogy, Event Factory, explored the strange city of Ravicka from outsider's perspective, a visitor trying to use an unfamiliarThe first book of this trilogy, Event Factory, explored the strange city of Ravicka from outsider's perspective, a visitor trying to use an unfamiliar language, trying to understand an unusual place. This book follows the 'great Ravickian novelist' Luswage Amini. I find that I am unable to describe these books in any way other than parroting the language on the back cover. They evoke vivid images and emotions, the unusual language is striking, and I sense a plot, or a point- the city is in trouble, the city both as structure/infrastructure and also the city as the web of human connections- and I do not mind that it so far seems to exist on a level that is not quite able to be articulated. I know I've read these books like I know I've had a dream....more
I didn't really "get it" at the end, but my enjoyment was never premised on getting it at the end, I liked being along for the ride. I especially loveI didn't really "get it" at the end, but my enjoyment was never premised on getting it at the end, I liked being along for the ride. I especially loved the presence of 80s technology, included my beloved cassette tapes (ghosts love analog) and also the testy author's note in the beginning to indicate that Adams knows which colleges Sir Isaac Newton and Samuel Taylor Coleridge really attended. My previous experiences with reading Adams are mostly of the 'pretentious middle-schooler' sort, long ago when I had probably never even met a real English person in my life. Will read more/again. ...more
"Well, at least it's cool to be a bad feminist now," is my quip on finding this book mostly infuriating. I want Zambreno to write, to keep writing, to"Well, at least it's cool to be a bad feminist now," is my quip on finding this book mostly infuriating. I want Zambreno to write, to keep writing, to have space to write, and I want also for me to disagree with her, argue with her, fight with her over her definition of womanhood, her limited, narrow (white white moneyed white privileged HETEROSEXUAL) definition of what it is to be Woman. "Read some lesbians, Kate, jesus" is often what I thought during this book. (Natalie Clifford Barney was championing women writers since the very beginning of the 20th century, there are other histories besides 'F. Scott Fitzgerald is a dick'.) This book is so angry about the canon (fair!) but so obsessed with male acknowledgement as the ultimate arbiter of everything. If this were a materialist claim, that would be one thing, but there is no materialist analysis here, just a kind of luxuriating around in desire for male approval and the deliciously sick enjoyment of how shitty the Modernist men were. They were shitty, no argument there. But Zambreno colonizing their wives' lives and art and writing for her own purposes, in order to make some kind of claim that to be married to a professor in the 21st century, one that she makes abundantly clear dotes on her, cares for her, loves to fuck her, is just the same as it was to be married to T.S. Eliot because, I don't know, you are a wife of someone who writes? No.
But, you know, I enjoy being challenged by writing far from what I believe. Perhaps in time I'll become more sympathetic to the project this book represents. ...more
What is the plot? I don't know. The plot is female rage and barbarism, distrust of the symbolic order, glittering images of the wild planet, flowers aWhat is the plot? I don't know. The plot is female rage and barbarism, distrust of the symbolic order, glittering images of the wild planet, flowers and bloodshed, ending with a ray of communist hope. The plot is amorphous gendered fury cut through with ritual recitations of the named and specific, because every woman is also an individual. This is also the best baby name book ever written, I'd change my name to Anemone Flavien posthaste, but I actually quite like the one I've got. Monique Wittig might be the writer who finally convinces me to learn French....more