Therese's Reviews > House of Holes

House of Holes by Nicholson Baker
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Aug 09, 12

bookshelves: dating-and-relationships, funny, literary-and-general-fiction, magical-realism, short-stories, research-spy-novel
Recommended for: People who appreciate funny porn, fans of surrealism and magical realism

A series of linked abusurdist erotic vignettes, with strong doses of surrealism and humor.

So this is a sex book, make no mistake. From reading formal book reviews beforehand I had the impression it was a novel with a plot, but it's not really that - though characters and places and concepts recur, there's no real extended story arc, it's more a series of delightfully absurd short stories. In a twisted kind of way, it reminded me of Louis Sachar's Sideways Stories From Wayside School, if the characters were all adults and were really, really into phalluses and fellatio and porn. As erotica, it's interesting because there's kind of a light, bubble-gum tone throughout - there is no particular darkness or sense of risk or danger here. It's very playful and unserious. I think it's rare that erotic writing can manage to be both arousing and funny, or arousing and light in tone, yet somehow I think House of Holes does it.

I found the writing wonderfully inventive and clever, and it was a pleasure to read. Just a lot of fun. I would recommend this to folks who are urbane and not offended by explicit references to human anatomy or variegated sexual practices. This is basically thinking persons' porn, without being too thinky.
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Quotes Therese Liked

Nicholson Baker
“Will you dance for me? Let your breasts roam for a moment -- I need to see how they dance.'

'Okay.' She danced, and as she danced, she tried to think of the most delicious salads she could imagine -- with artichokes and sundried tomato and blue cheese dressing, and beets, lots of beets.”
Nicholson Baker, House of Holes


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