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

Maps and Legends by Michael Chabon
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's review
Mar 16, 2010

it was amazing
bookshelves: read2010, favorites

I love serendipitious books--sometimes I'll go to the library after work and just wander the shelves, even though I have a few dozen unread books at home and a roommate who looks at me like I'm crazy. Sometimes it's terrible; you get three pages in and have to put it down because you're frightening the people on the train with your reaction. Sometimes it's okay, and at least passes the time. And sometimes it's sheer brilliance. It's a new Regency author with a fifty-book backlist you can jump into. It's new narrative nonfiction that pulls you into another world.

It's a collection of Michael Chabon essays that reminds you all over again why you love reading and writing.

Chabon puts into words why I'm deepy suspicious of the modern short story, calling his own work in that area "plotless and sparking with epiphanic dew." He defends genre fiction and mocks the people who think that once a genre book becomes critically acclaimed, it's not really genre anymore. He makes me wish I read comic books; he tells the world his first story was a Sherlock Holmes fanfic; and in an essay called "My Back Pages," he describes writing the beginning of his first novel in a way that had me sniffling back tears and even more determined to write my own first novel ASAP.

Sometimes the patron saints of libraries (St. Catherine, St. Jerome, and St. Lawrence) drop the perfect book onto the shelves at the perfect time for me to read it. That was this book for me.

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Reading Progress

March 16, 2010 – Started Reading
March 16, 2010 – Shelved
March 18, 2010 – Shelved as: read2010
March 18, 2010 – Finished Reading
June 7, 2017 – Shelved as: favorites

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