Justin Borek's Reviews > One for Sorrow

One for Sorrow by Christopher Barzak
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M_50x66
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Jun 13, 08

Read in June, 2008

I think the best summary of this book I've read so far described it as a "homo-erotic ghost story". While that may be an overly simplified description, if that doesn't pique your interest, you should probably just avoid this read. Barzak starts off with a premise that has worked well in other stories, such as The Body by Stephen King. It's basically a coming of age/loss of innocence tale involving a teenager's reaction to the murder of a boy at his school. Then it all goes down the crapper.

What comes next is a disjointed, meandering, narrative full of characters that make completely irrational choices for no apparent reason. The narrator never bothers to fill us in on the motivation behind his choices, so it gives us no reason to care. He is apparently from some kind of family of psychics which allows him to talk to spirits, but who knows? He seems to hold his grandmother and her advice in high regard, but does he listen when she says not to get involved with the dead? Apparently not. Instead, we get sunflowers.

I think this is the first time I've ever used the word crapper in a review of any kind, so hopefully that says something to anyone thinking of picking this book up.
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Amber Ha! I love your review and wish I would have remembered it before taking this book off the shelf. I was looking for a quick read to travel with and randomly selected this book. "Homo-erotic ghost story" is a perfect description as are your comments about the narrator, his decisions and simply stated "sunflowers", lol! I guess I can be glad I've read the book so I was able to appreciate your great review.


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