Lauren's Reviews > Light Boxes

Light Boxes by Shane Jones
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's review
Aug 17, 2011

it was amazing
bookshelves: read-in-2011, favey-fave-faves
Read from August 17 to 18, 2011 — I own a copy

I rarely read the praise that is attached to books. While glancing at the page of praise for Shane Jones' Light Boxes, it is less the praise itself which is important, and more the length of each statement. These are not trite one-liners, but actual statements about this work. To me, this says that there is a lot to be said about Light Boxes.

This work is deceptively simple, yet beautiful, elegant, extraordinary, and rather exquisite in its simplicity. It utilizes language, rather than manipulating it, in a very 21st Century way. The text itself is very stripped down, with minimal flourish and no flowery prose, and yet, the words themselves create vivid, violent imagery. It is whimsical and devious. It creates a narrative from multiple perspectives and yet maintains a single voice. It infuses that personal narrative with non-narrative lists, a drawing, changes in font and font size, external "data," etc., devices to further the narrative and establish that single voice.

It is like a fairy tale in its use of the grotesque and the elegance of its imagery. It creates a magical world which could only exist in a fictional universe, with very little exposition. It uses an economy of phrasing and a wealth of imagery. I think A.A. Milne, Kurt Vonnegut, and Dr. Suess would have loved this book.

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08/17/2011 page 68
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