This is a big show! April is Community of Many Faces. We go the whole way across the world to discuss Haruki Murakami’s 1Q84. It is a long, complex book, and we barely scratch the surface. (Speaking of surface, the beautiful cover of the American edition was designed by Chip Kidd.) Hopefully, we confuse you and pique your interest. If you like romance, it has LOVE. If you like Sci-Fi, it has TWO MOONS. If you like snobby literature, THE AUTHOR TEACHES AT PRINCETON. Wait…
No joke! This is a big show! Liz is our special guest and it is Jesse’s last show. They take the opportunity to let Bryan know what they really think of Infinite Jest.
Fans of the wildly influential book The Artist’s Way will not want to miss this intimate glimpse into Julia Cameron’s daily life. Intended as a creative diary, these short, simple entries describing meals with friends, thoughts about projects, and even the weather may help inspire the reader to look at their own life in a new way.
Kaneto Shindo’s horrifying masterpiece roils with sexual tension, desperation and emotional violence. Wife and mother-in-law of a warring samurai stay alive by whatever means necessary. It’s like Survivor but with real blood and no Jeff Probst. Is it the evil that they do to themselves and those around them that lures a demonic samurai to their hide away in a sea of wavering grass. Essential viewing regardless, it is worth watching to see where Ang Lee stole the tree fight scene in Crouching Tiger Hidden Dragon.
This lovely film tells the story of an unlikely friendship between two parks workers. Murph (Ned Beatty) is near retirement and Paul (Liev Schreiber) is a young ex-con searching for his place in the world. Quiet and subtle, Spring Forward is a compassionate film with beautiful scenery and a great score.
I don’t usually read police procedurals, but the author’s beautiful writing style made this book a real pleasure for me. The story is suspenseful, the characters feel real and complex, and the dialogue is snappy and current. In addition, the landscape, the Irish countryside, is as beautifully drawn as the human characters, and also plays an important role. A sequel to this book, The Likeness, was recently released, and a third book is in the works.
I heard Bill Strickland speak at an arts conference earlier this year and immediately went and picked up his book. His stories about the power of the arts to improve people’s lives is truly inspiring. In 1968 he looked around his very poor neighborhood in Pittsburgh and decided he needed to try to save the local kids’ souls with clay, the same way his had been saved. It’s been a rocky road, but Strickland has lived by his belief that everyone has potential and he has changed lives doing it.
This is my new favorite book, after Infinite Jest and Ulysses. Experimental, beautiful, funny, and sad, this book perfectly embodies the power of the book as an art form. You could tell the same story as a movie (and there are film-like qualities to it with the use of photographs) but I would argue that it wouldn’t take your breath away the same way in any other format.
Be nice. Be on topic.
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