Sunday, January 1 1995
Niles applies her brilliant one-liners to play havoc with are our pop-culture silliness.
While it sure isn't beach reading, Georges Minois's 'History of Suicide' isn't nearly as dark nor depressing a book as one might think. Which isn't necessarily a good thing.
Even as Jews were earnestly absorbing American life, they were twisting popular culture to reflect their own fear of alienation.
Most of the people here in Madison are like everyone else in the state: Packer lovin', Milwaukee avoidin', fried cheese curd eatin' 'Sconsinites, and that's that.
Tim McLoughlin's 'Heart of the Old Country' exposes the soul inside the seamy underbelly of New York. It's a gritty slice of life drawn from McLoughlin's experiences, as he reveals in an interview with 'PopMatters'.
The central unifier involves a computer programmer who leaves the Novell basement of Unix realtime and attempts to blend into corporate culture, thinking the 1950s ideal man is what he needs to emulate. Knowing he is socially illiterate, he figures the only way to acquire a wife is by taking a woman hostage. [Review and interview with Lily James, author of 'High Drama in Fabulous Toledo'].
[T]he mystery becomes, really, two mysteries: how someone so apparently skilled and dedicated to a life of writing poetry can fall so far; and second, why?"
There are more painful pursuits of a week's time than sitting with a 200-channel television from the early rays of the morning to the dark crevices of twilight.
The dialogue is fast-paced, the narrative engages the reader, and Mazza rarely dwells on minute details. She also gives the reader a chance to feel superior to her characters by creating a group that is as emotionally evolved as a concrete chicken.