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The Museum of Love

3.67  ·  Rating details ·  33 Ratings  ·  6 Reviews
This story traces the journey of a young French Canadian across the top of North America. It is a darkly magical world through which Jean-Michel travels, a blend of brutality and the supernatural, black humour and tenderness, with intrusions of the surreal.
Paperback, 224 pages
Published February 1st 1995 by The Overlook Press (first published April 1st 1993)
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Eddie Watkins
Aug 11, 2008 rated it really liked it
Shelves: canadian-fiction
Somehow I found my way to this book through the Quay Brothers, whose work is featured on the cover, which is appropriate as both the Quays' work and this book are animated by an elegant morbidity. But while the Quays rarely (never?) explicitly address sex or sexuality, The Museum of Love seems (and I mean seems, as it's very difficult to synopsize this book or even say exactly what it's about) to be primarily about a boy's/young man's initiation into various forms of gay love. Or at least it see ...more
Chris
Aug 08, 2007 added it
Recommends it for: everybody
Weiner has written a violent, sordid, mystical book in a tone that is difficult to maintain for more than a few pages. Like Hemon in Nowhere Man, he failed -- but it doesnt matter. Just like the apostrophe on my keyboard doesnt work, but it doesnt matter. Its worth a read anyhow, because the fragments of plot create a more intricate vehicle than something more coherent might.

The metempsychotic mix, the first-person hallucinations that were not Jean, the narrator we return to, are tiring and per
...more
Susan
Jun 26, 2011 rated it it was amazing
This is one of the best books I've read in a long time. Being half French-Canadian this book spoke loudly to me. The hero, an anti-hero actually if you follow the Canadian mainstream thought of the French as being invalid, witnesses the loss of the likeable identity of the original settlers of North America and takes on idenities of others considered less-likeable from the historical timeset the book covers. In every identity he tries to find an identity and acceptance and travels from his birth ...more
Shannon
Oct 10, 2007 marked it as to-read
Recommends it for: people with strong stomachs
Shelves: own
EDIT: Well, dammit. I got swept up in school/other books and I never finished this. It's been long enough now that I feel I'd have to re-read it entirely now. I was more than halfway, too. I suck.

I still haven't finished this, because it's become horrendously depressing and grotesque. If you like death, rape, animal abuse, rape, disfigurement, some more rape, and just generally reading about humans being completely brutal to each other.. you'll probably love this book. It's actually beautifully,
...more
Sarah
Oct 27, 2010 added it
i'm only about a third of the way through it, but so far this book is brutal and unpleasant. my obsessive tendencies are forcing me to continue to read it. if i were a stronger person i'd put it down and start something different.

***

i managed to push through it, but this book did not redeem itself. the positive thing that i can say about steve weiner is that he can definitely evoke strong feelings with his writing. but the imagery was just too disturbing for this to be an enjoyable read.
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Born in Wisconsin, now based in Vancouver, Steve Weiner studied writing and film animation in California. He is a contributor to The Clear Cut Future , a Clear Cut Press anthology. Weiner's first novel The Museum of Love was nominated for the Giller Prize.

"Mr. Weiner's fictional world has an affinity with the work of the writers Ben Okri and J. G. Ballard, the photographer Joel-Peter Witkin an
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