Caroline Niziol's Reviews > Maps and Legends: Reading and Writing Along the Borderlands

Maps and Legends by Michael Chabon
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's review
Sep 08, 2012

it was amazing
bookshelves: non-fiction
Recommended for: sci-fi and fantasy readers
Read from September 08 to 20, 2012

When Michael Chabon came to Davidson during my time as student, in 2008, I took feverish notes on his lecture. His phrases were memorable as he described science fiction as the "transvestite cousin at Thanksgiving dinner, his fabulous hat studiously ignored" and talked about his run-in with Yiddish fanatics.

Well, had I known that his talk -- and many other equally fantastic essays -- would be perfectly contained in Maps and Legends, I might have stopped compulsively taking notes and simply basked in his talk. This book is brilliant. Every essay offers a nugget of wisdom for people who feel torn at their love of genre fiction, or just resentful toward the academic establishment for discounting genre fiction books. Chabon has a knack for turning a clever phrase and sits at the border between academic writing and accessibility. He comes across as a genuine, likable writer -- not an easy feat.

I definitely recommend this book.

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Reading Progress

42.0% "Chabon is a freaking genius."
67.0% "So good. I love his remarks on sci-fi."
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Comments (showing 1-4 of 4) (4 new)

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message 1: by J.P. (new)

J.P. If you enjoy this, pick up The Yiddish Policemen's Union. It's a really good mystery and funny too.

Caroline Niziol Thanks for the recommendation! I had picked it up some years back but didn't get into it. I'll have to give it another go.

Sara Sams Such a good read! I love "On Daemons & Dust."

Caroline Niziol Sara wrote: "Such a good read! I love "On Daemons & Dust.""

Me too! I wrote about His Dark Materials for Randy's Milton class senior year, so I've spent a lot of time analyzing those books.

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