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Another fine mess

Reader fan critic teacher reader fan.

Currently reading

Ottessa Moshfegh
Knife Fight and Other Struggles
David Nickle
Far from the Tree: Parents, Children, and the Search for Identity
Andrew Solomon
The Good Lord Bird
James McBride
Ancillary Justice
Ann Leckie
Our Underachieving Colleges: A Candid Look at How Much Students Learn and Why They Should Be Learning More (New Edition)
Derek Bok
Dissident Gardens
Jonathan Lethem
Nightmare Movies: Horror on Screen Since the 1960s
Kim Newman
The Information: A History, a Theory, a Flood
James Gleick
Complete Novels
Dashiell Hammett, Steven Marcus
Terminal Freeze - Lincoln Child Some reasons my intelligence should be questioned:

--I picked up this book at the library, despite never feeling more than a middling acceptance of Child's previous fictions. At best middling. I really had no interest in Child. Even the plot summary annoyed me. But I still thought: it's got monsters.

--I cannot shake my longstanding desire for cool monster fictions. But it's not the desire I would bash, any more than my appreciative longing for foolish intoxication. Rather, it's what such desire drives me to do, e.g., pick up the robitussin when the fridge runs dry, or this fucking book (ever). For the back-cover: Lincoln Child is the cheap cough medicine of horror thrills. And to put on my tombstone: M. Reynolds, Professor of Literature and moron, drank a lot of cheap cough medicine.

--I kept reading this book despite an indigenous shaman character who converses in a mix of italicized consonant-heavy authentic non-English and stock portentous phrases (akin to "Buffalo coming") like eighty-seven-thousand other indigenous shaman characters in previous horror fiction history.

--I kept reading this book despite a sneaky amoral character (usually in the media, a corporation, or the law--here media) who arrives with clearly-visible indications of his centrality to unleashing hell and clearly-visible dotted lines circling his torso where the jaws of the beast will soon clamp down.

--I kept reading this book even though I would skip whole swathes of prose, to get to the next killing, even though the killings were uninteresting, as were most of the pseudo-scientific musings about the chemical structure of ice. In other words, I kept reading as if somewhere, just around the corner, something interesting would happen, even though I knew it wouldn't.

--...which also suggests that I am likely to pick up another Child, or another Robitussinesque "thriller," because I can't help myself.

My Recommended line was too long, so here it is: recommended to those who have never seen a horror movie, ever, and might be surprised by some element of this novel, even though they probably would nonetheless not enjoy it