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Why We Broke Up by Daniel Handler
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May 05, 12

bookshelves: beautiful-objects, so-this-is-love, youngfolk
Read from April 19 to 23, 2012

MMmmmmaira Kalman.

And also, Daniel Handler. But mostly Maira. I wish I could paint like her.

My first exposure to Daniel Handler was through his pen name, Lemony Snicket. I bought a boxed set at Target the first time I laid eyes on the books. I packed the first three in the Series to go camping and kicked myself for not bringing the rest. I think the series should have maybe ended earlier and sort of lost steam, but maybe it's just that I got used to his tricks and such, and stopped being blown away. He really does have a way with words and an amazing wit and a gift for sharing his passion for lit and language.

I read his adult novel, The Basic Eight, which I loved. I eagerly sought out Watch Your Mouth, next, but I was disappointed. It was all dark and golemy and Jewish and dangerous and I was bored. Or maybe just not smart enough.

Adverbs really excited me when I read an advanced excerpt in The New Yorker. It was a novel composed of short stories that could be independent of each other and also are tied together in layers and strands and subtlety. It annoyed the hell out of me. It was so aware of its trickery and talent and postmodern bullshi.

Even after all that, I was genuinely psyched when I saw Kim's review of this book. I didn't know it existed! I love Maira Kalman and I've loved Handler, intermittently. I loved the bold design and organization. I hadn't read much YA, recently. I was in a reading slump and it seemed just the thing. I guess it didn't disappoint. I liked it a lot. It's very far from a 5 for me, though.

This review has told you nothing helpful as of yet but I feel like clicking save, now, anyway. SIGH. I'm out of review-writing shape.
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Tony MMmmmmaira Kalman! (yes!)


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