Ron Grunberg's Reviews > Sweet and Vicious

Sweet and Vicious by David Schickler
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Feb 07, 08

bookshelves: fiction
Read in February, 2008

It's been a few years since his last publication, I've read both David's books at least twice, and am somewhat impatiently waiting for his next. He's a bright young writer of enormous talent. He takes every word--every sentence--as a great challenge. He doesn't want to be mediocre for one moment. He demands his prose is infused with--here's a word he might use--the stupendous.

Each of his characters are remarkable. On the one hand they seem absurd caricatures but on the other, many are presented as considerably more noteworthy in their inner lives--more profound, more dramatic--than the average characters we seem to see on an everyday basis, inside and outside of books.

If one theme drives all of his writing it is man's confrontation with that "great opportunity" in life--it comes to all of us at least once, he seems sure to be saying--and it's what we do with that moment that is crucial, that defines us for evermore. Even if the action we need to take at such a given moment is completely boggled, wrong, insanely misplaced, the moment calls for action, big action, and in the end the taking of it is what might well propel us to "the next level" of being that we all strive for.

I owe at least myself an explanation of why I didn't place five stars next to this book; I seem pretty liberal with that assignation. I think it's because I prefer the less absurd--although I can't really fault him for this presentation. At all.
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