Spotted: So long, see you tomorrow

Well, I won’t, because I’m heading out of town for Memorial Day.  Considering the habitual use of the phrase, I was surprised to see this book turn up in the top results when I googled the title.  The description does sound quite interesting though.

In this magically evocative novel, William Maxwell explores the enigmatic gravity of the past, which compels us to keep explaining it even as it makes liars out of us every time we try. On a winter morning in the 1920s, a shot rings out on a farm in rural Illinois. A man named Lloyd Wilson has been killed. And the tenuous friendship between two lonely teenagers—one privileged yet neglected, the other a troubled farm boy—has been shattered.Fifty years later, one of those boys—now a grown man—tries to reconstruct the events that led up to the murder. In doing so, he is inevitably drawn back to his lost friend Cletus, who has the misfortune of being the son of Wilson’s killer and who in the months before witnessed things that Maxwell’s narrator can only guess at. Out of memory and imagination, the surmises of children and the destructive passions of their parents, Maxwell creates a luminous American classic of youth and loss.

Good read for a long weekend.  Have a great Memorial Day!


Spotted: World War Z

World War Z? What is this book about?!  Did we have so many World Wars that we had to ditch Roman numerals and go alpha-numeric?  Does Z stand for something, like Zinc or Zelda?  So curious, let’s look it up.

Ah, looks like it signifies “zombies.”  And it’s about to be a motion picture, starring Mr. Pitt himself who, as we all know, sympathizes with the undead to such an extent he married one (I kid, I kid).  From the review:

The Zombie War came unthinkably close to eradicating humanity. Max Brooks, driven by the urgency of preserving the acid-etched first-hand experiences of the survivors from those apocalyptic years, traveled across the United States of America and throughout the world, from decimated cities that once teemed with upwards of thirty million souls to the most remote and inhospitable areas of the planet. He recorded the testimony of men, women, and sometimes children who came face-to-face with the living, or at least the undead, hell of that dreadful time. World War Z is the result. Never before have we had access to a document that so powerfully conveys the depth of fear and horror, and also the ineradicable spirit of resistance, that gripped human society through the plague years.

Huh.  I’m getting a little tired of zombies, to tell you the truth.  On a scale of overuse, I think they’re approaching stage “Vampire.”  Don’t get me wrong, I like zombies as much as the next guy, and I will have a conversation with you about why slow zombies are better than fast zombies.  But it just seems like you can’t throw a flesh-craving cat by it’s bony tail these days without hitting the living dead.

That all said, the perspective from which this is written, as post-zombie war oral history, is pretty novel.   Reminds me a bit of War of the Worlds.  Though hopefully no one will read this book or see this movie and start chopping off the heads of everyone who just looks kind of tired or ill.

But make sure you don’t buy it from the zombies at Amazon.  Buy it here and help fund the human resistance!  Or something.