Tuesday, November 17, 2009


What Was I Thinking? 58 Bad Boyfriend Stories, edited by Barbara Davilman and Liz Dubelman. Huh. This could have been better. The short stories were solicited from various writers (print, screenplay, etc.), so they lack a "real people" quality: the bad boyfriends are frequently musicians or actors, or the stories start out "So I met this guy (in film school/through my agent/on a set)..." Sometimes it's fun to read about the misfortunes of others, to put your own suckitude into perspective; this book fails epically. Also, I'd definitely read 2 of these stories before (don't ask me where, though), and a few more sounded familiar, so the materials is definitely not all new. While some are fairly well-written, but most are kind of not; they feel kind of thrown-together, like the editors offered the individual writers some money and the writers spit something out. Panic in Level 4: Cannibals, Killer Viruses, and Other Journeys to the Edge of Science, by Richard Preston; read by James Lurie. I enjoyed the storytelling in this (I listened to the audiobook version, and the reader was good, in addition to the writer having a good storytelling voice). The writer did tend to repeat himself alot, though, which I find mildly annoying. I can, generally, remember a few things at a time. The thing I didn't really like about this was that this book was really 3 different long-ish stories. The author wrote articles, I believe, on each of these topics at different points in his career. These stories don't really go together at all; they are just together because not any one of them was something the author apparently wanted to make into a full book-length work. It seems kind of lazy.

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