karen's Reviews > Empty The Sun

Empty The Sun by Joseph Mattson
Rate this book
Clear rating

's review
Dec 09, 2009

really liked it

** now with cd review

so whenever anyone gives me a book to review, my trendency is to be more forgiving with it than if it's something i actually had to pay for or pick out for myself. it's like a nice reciprocal thing to do - you give to me, i give back. but this time, i didn't have to be too gentle, i really enjoyed this book. it is occasionally a little slick and tricky with its wordplay,and it's not my usual story,to be sure, but i found a lot of it to be spot-on and nicely lyrical. "the marooned oaks, bent as dried witches frozen in sacred acts, dotted the black hills of the mountains breaking from the coast, and grew blacker along the road to Paso Robles". unexpected imagery always gets to me. and this passage is rather long, but i liked it as a piece: "I couldn't bear to let Hal rot away into anonymous oblivion in The Amigo, the ramshackle hotel we lived in which decades before had been a toy factory warehouse. If dreams were once born in the belly of that old building's former incarnation then they sure as hell went back there now to die. No, too many unsigned bodies had been hauled out of the place already. Disaffected former wives surrendered to alcohol, abused and saintly prostitutes, zombie junkies with no discipline, general head cases fried too long under the unforgiving Southern California sun, vets, the discomfited scarred and obese, unknown Blues legends, and a score of forsaken others. The Amigo was first-rate for the crestfallen. Refuge is not a pretty thing. Hal and I ended up there for a similar core reason dressed up in different circumstances: We were each wholly alone in the world after losing something we couldn't afford to lose, which opened a hole so deep in our lives that absolutely nothing could possibly fill it." I don't know, that was just something at the beginning that i found myself rereading, i think i just liked the sentence about refuge, but it made no sense out of context, so i had to type the whole damn thing, despite my shitty typing skills.

let me just free-associate about l.a. for a minute: earthquakes, fake tits, the doors, small dogs, aborted expectations, expensive clothes, phil lewis, self-importance, glare, sun, sun fucking sun... so yeah - except for my long-dormant junior high crush on phil lewis, all bad things.and i've never actually been to l.a., naturally, my opinions are never based on anything concrete; i just have new york mindset about it as being somewhere far away and "other" in 'learn to swim' land. and i hate the heat. and i don't drive. so basically, i'm here where i am safe. and this isn't technically an l.a. novel, because it travels, but the beginning is sort of a love letter to the bitch of a city, which is his description, not mine. but i did find the descriptive passages of the city alluring,is the point, for all my left-coast suspicions. i have a headache and it is pushing on the critical functions of my brain, so if this makes no sense, forgive.

i'm working on getting this into the store, and all you locals can run in and pick it up and celebrate the lure of the other coast.

oh, and there's a cd, but i havent listened to that yet.
tom fuller rolls his eyes.

** so, yeah, that cd was not at all what i was expecting. i figured it would be all balls and blues and whiskey and driving, or something like the black crowes, but it was actually quite pretty guitar instrumentals, mostly. it's no niandra lades, but it's pretty nice all the same. i guess that's a review.
26 likes · flag

Sign into Goodreads to see if any of your friends have read Empty The Sun.
Sign In »

Comments (showing 1-29 of 29) (29 new)

dateDown arrow    newest »

message 1: by Stephen (new)

Stephen my trendency is to be more forgiving How very trendy of you.

karen ha! i create the words! look out, webster's...

karen i half-win.
i made a bet (with myself) that you would either do that or send me a picture of phil lewis. oh, baby, i know your ways...

Joshua Nomen-Mutatio karen wrote: "i half-win.
i made a bet (with myself)"

"Fret for your contract..."

I forgot how great their Brothers Quay type videos were/are.

I'm glad you've got my every next move plotted out. I'm in good hands, regardless of typing skillz.

Joshua Nomen-Mutatio [image error]

I know that you'll deny that this is the Phil Lewis you're talking about, but I also know your ways.

karen hahaahahaha. i had some weird tastes in junior high. i love the crooked smiles, though.....

Joshua Nomen-Mutatio Look at ol' Phil's stats! He's got it GOIN' ON!


karen i like an ambitious man. one that allows himself his own brand of luxuries.

message 10: by Stephen (new)

Stephen You two are starting to sound romantically involved. hmmmmmm

karen me and ambitious phil, or me and mfso?

message 12: by Stephen (new)

Stephen you and mfso. ambitious phil

Joshua Nomen-Mutatio That's 'cause karen's my favorite goodreader! And because of all the winking and kissy face emoticons I send her way.

message 14: by Stephen (new)

Stephen Uh huh. Nice to hear from you again MFSO. I miss you. Still think you and kissy face emoticons Karen have a little flirty flrity ooo la la going on here. ;-) I'm all for it.

karen if it doesn't work out with me and phil lewis, i'll give you a call, mf.

Joshua Nomen-Mutatio I'll keep my fingers crossed in hopes of kicking off the hottest internet-based relationship since you and Phil Lewis were a power couple.

I didn't want it to come to this but I think Phil Lewis (accountant/voice-over artist/actor extraordinaire) and I may ended up dueling with pistols at dawn...

karen that's actually a really good tie-in to this book, believe it or not...

read it!

message 18: by Stephen (new)

Stephen Now a duel, that's very 19th Century.

Joshua Nomen-Mutatio I've heard good things about the band that does the music, too. Never actually listened to anything by them yet.

karen will listen to cd now as i clean up book avalanche that occurred in my absence.

Joshua Nomen-Mutatio I read this teaser and liked it:


message 22: by Greg (new) - rated it 3 stars

Greg I don't think you stand a chance dueling against someone that used to be in L.A. Guns, that is a horrible attempt at pun-ish humor. I'm sorry. I'm just smarting from finding out that Karen is your favorite good-reader. I thought we shared something mfso.

message 23: by Joshua Nomen-Mutatio (last edited Dec 10, 2009 09:05PM) (new)

Joshua Nomen-Mutatio Well, Karen can attest to me telling her that you and her are my favorite Goodreaders, plural. Sorry, everyone who's not Greg and Karen.

And I'll totally take on anyone named Phil Lewis--accountant, L.A. Gun and beyond. Pistols. Dawn. Be there, Phils.

message 24: by Greg (new) - rated it 3 stars

Greg Make sure your second tapes this epic battle of mfso vs. the phil lewis's of the world to put up on youtube.

message 25: by Stephen (new)

Stephen I'll sell the tickets. We'll make millions in pay per view!

karen you will need to pad the "event" a little.

message 27: by Stephen (new)

Stephen Yeah, that's no problem though. I know how to get people into venues.

Joshua Nomen-Mutatio karen wrote: "you will need to pad the "event" a little."

Haha, yeah, imaginary events need all the padding they can get.

message 29: by Stephen (new)

Stephen Imaginary events are the stuff of our lives. Fiction.

back to top