#russbooks Day 4: Not for the Faint of Heart
In hindsight, I should have realized we were in for a rough ride when the box fell apart.
All I did was pick the poor thing up from the stack, and one entire side gave out, spilling books everywhere. We stuffed them back into the remains of the box, trying to preserve the order of the stack (this is for posterity, after all) and carried the whole mess into the study for its photo-op.
Poor thing. It doesn’t look substantially better when we open it:
All unsuspecting, we pick up the first book:
Uplifting title, non? Actually, the back cover copy sounds interesting, in a rather Kubrickian way. It’s going onto my TBR stack. Meanwhile Rachael, who has someplace to go after we finish today’s liveblog, is already pawing through the rest of the books.
But, no, Gentle Reader: I’m wrong as usual. The reality is much worse. This book contains elements of the literary, but also the remains of a Women’s Studies class, and none of it (despite the fact that the Sedaris volume is billed as humor) will do anything to lift the spirits. Unless we’re talking about spirits of the liquid variety. Case in point:
Now, I have to admit I’ve put this book on my TBR stack. The authors make a very interesting case for the proposition that society really can’t take steps to move itself beyond rape until we understand where rape comes from: that it’s not strictly a sociological issue, but that there are issues of biology at work as well. I’ve come away from the more sociological and/or behavioralist works I’ve read on this topic profoundly dissatisfied, and clearly the applications of those theories aren’t really working out. I’d like an opportunity to understand.
I do wonder why Russ saved it, however. I feel confident rape is not one of his vices.
Now my TBR stack is growing. I’d heard about this book when it first came out and wondered. Now that it is in my house I must make time for it.
Humor is a very individual thing. I glance through this book: it’s well-written and keenly-observed, but the humor is of a flavor that may get a wry smile out of me now and then, not the sustained laughter the blurbs promise. Your mileage may vary, and Russ’s obviously does: I know he’s a Sedaris fan.
Meanwhile Rachael, overwhelmed by it all, has thrown in the towel:
But the book on top of her head looks promising:
I wonder if the Library Gods have smiled on me and the first volume is somewhere in the Big Stack of Boxes. Otherwise I’m going to have to track it down.
There’s only one book left:
You’ve heard about this book, of course, even if you don’t recognize the title. (I didn’t.) It’s the autobiography of Valentino Achak Deng, one of the boys from Sudan who came to America.
By the time we’re through with this box, we’re ready to give up, just like the box. I even forget to sign off. I can only hope there is no one out there waiting for more transmissions from Box #4, the Box of Depress.
We’ll be opening the next box this evening. Because hope springs eternal, maybe.
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