Laura's Reviews > Wonder Boys

Wonder Boys by Michael Chabon
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's review
Dec 28, 11

bookshelves: library
Read in January, 2002

"Sara would read anything you handed her--Jean Rhys, Jean Shepherd, Jean Genet--at a steady rate of sixty-five pages an hour, grimly and unsparingly and without apparent pleasure. She read upon waking, sitting on the toilet, stretched out in the backseat of the car. When she went to the movies she took a book with her, to read before the show began, and it was not unusual to find her standing in front of the microwave, with a book in one hand and a fork in the other, heating a cup of noodle soup while she read, say, At Lady Molly's for the third time (she was a sucker for series and linked novels). If there was nothing else she would consume all the magazines and newspapers in the house--reading, to her, was a kind of pyromania--and when these ran out she would reach for insurance brochures, hotel prospectuses and product warranties, advertising circulars, sheets of coupons. Once I had come upon the spectacle of Sara, finished with a volume of C. P. Snow while only partway through one of the long baths she took for her bad back, desperately scanning the label on a bottle of Listerine."

"Writers, unlike most people, tell their best lies when they are alone."

"It struck me that the chief obstacle to marital contentment was this perpetual gulf between the well-founded, commendable pessimism of women and the sheer dumb animal optimism of men, the latter a force more than any other responsible for the lamentable state of the world."
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