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O brave new world that has such people in it

GG my love,

I finished this a while ago but never got around to posting an entry about it.  It was… interesting.  Really fantastic, but certain parts were a bit strange.  It made you think about what that kind of society would be like:  everyone in their own place, with no reason to be unhappy, yet with no families, real love, or art.  Would that be true happiness?  The people in this society are conditioned from birth to belong to a certain class, with beliefs specific to that class.  They wear one color their whole lives to identify themselves, and are assigned to a job.  There’s no freedom, except about who you can date, apparently.  And you’re taught to be promiscuous, because sex was merely pleasure and no longer about making children.  (Children are made in tubes!)

The real message hits when two characters visit the Reservation, where Indian tribes roam free.  A woman from the outside was lost there years ago, and had a child while stuck on the Reservation.  The woman, Linda, is wrecked by age (they don’t let them get old, basically, in society) and pretty much just goes crazy.  She wants to get back to civilization, but when she gets there she takes a ton of soma (happy pills) and goes into a  coma-like state until she dies.  Her son, John, is basically the big symbolic character in the book; he doesn’t understand the “perfect” society outside of the Reservation and eventually goes mad himself, because he’d been raised on with the Indians who taught values of freedom and love.  The two contrasting lifestyles present the real issue that the novel tries to get across.  Which would you rather chose:  being able to love and be free, but also true unhappiness and pain, or knowing your place, with adequate pleasure to keep you satisfied but no choice in the matter?  (Personally, I’d take the love.)

As far as the characters went, I felt like a couple of them could have been a bit deeper.  I guess the point was that no one in this society was very deep, because their true essence was only on the surface, as was their happiness.  The only three who did go deeper (Bernard, Helmholtz, and John) symbolized the fact that we, as humans, are prone to human desires, pain, and emotions, no matter how conditioned we are not to be.  These three characters pretty much ended up unhappy at the end, but ultimately, they were more free than any of the others.  (John’s conclusion especially exemplified freedom, when a human being is asked to go against his nature.)  I also wanted a stronger female character, as the women were all basically dumbasses.  (Lenina had meaning, but she still made me roll my eyes.)

Overall a wonderful and complex read.  Not easy, but certainly worthwhile.  And now I think I’ll continue with Wit’s End, which I started and seems like a cute story.  My workload this semester is a little more than it was last, so I might have to have some easy reads for a while.

Miss you dearly. ❤

~GW

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everything is illuminated in the light of the past

Dearest GW~

“Everything is Illuminated” is a stunning book. It is at once silly and deeply meaningful. It was almost three books in one: there was the letters that Alex wrote to Jonathan, the story of Jonathan written by Alex and the fantastically untrue story of Jonathan’s ancestors. Some parts were wickedly funny, like when Alex writes about Sammy Davis Junior, Junior (Officious Seeing-Eye Bitch) or when he speaks of “spleening” his mother. But the end made me cry! The way it was written was highly experimental and very emotional.

My friend CN told me about the book: she loves the movie and the lead singer of her favorite band (Gogol Bordello) plays Alex in it. I had every intention of reading the book eventually, but when I was home for winter break, I found the book in my dad’s book collection! I’m really not surprised by this because my dad read anything and everything, from Anthony Bourdain to Shakespeare, and everything in between! Remember the time we found a whole box of cheap mystery novels?

Anyway, I decided to read the book while I was in London and it was fantastic! It was more sexual than I thought it would be however, which is awkward when you’re sitting next to an older British woman on the plane. I kept worrying that she would see what was on the page! The ending tore my heart out so on the plane ride back, I was practically bawling, which I’m sure was odd to the people sitting around me.

I highly suggest you see the movie and read the book. They are both really good and really different from each other. Now on to “A Clockwork Orange”!

Miss you soo soo much,

GG

 

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The quick brown fox jumps over the lazy dog.

Darling GW~

I just finished “Ella Minnow Pea” by Mark Dunn. It was amazing! But first I want to comment on “A Clockwork Orange”. I’m getting the movie version really soon through netflix! =D Even before you mentioned Holden I was thinking that the book sounded a lot like “Catcher in the Rye”. I hope it’s better though because I didn’t like most of “Cather in the Rye”…the last half was better than the first but the book as a whole was a bit whiney.

“Ella Minnow Pea” was marvelous! The whole book was written in letters and the letters got more and more difficult to write. The people live on the facetiousness island of Nollop named after Nevin Nollop, the author of the sentence “The quick brown fox jumps over the lazy dog” which is made up of 35 letters and contains every letter of the alphabet. The sentence is immortalized in tiles along with a statue of Nevin Nollop. The statue is 100 years old in the book and the tiles begin to fall and as the tiles fall, the letters become outlawed.

As you know, I am really fond of dystopia books and this one was really good! As the letters began to disappear, so did the people who lived on the island. Either they didn’t want to stay or they got banished for speaking and writing the outlawed letters. Towards the end of the book, the letters got a little difficult to understand because they began to use different combinations of letters to formulate words that would otherwise be outlawed.

There is also love in the book and insanity and general mayhem…so I really enjoyed it. =D

Much Love,

GG

p.s. Besides our initials, I used the letter “G” ten times. =]

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“What’s it going to be then, eh?”

GG Dearest,

Mind pretty much blown by A Clockwork Orange.  The weird thing is, nothing in it really connected or meant much to me until the very end, when you realize what the novel is actually all about.  Going into it I thought it was kind of a message about what the future might be like if we’re not careful, but in truth its a coming of age.  Burgess broke the book up into three parts, seven chapters each.  Seven times three, as he points out in the foreward, is 21, the standard legal age when you’re truly considered an adult.  By the end, you fully get the experience of a troubled young man growing up, even though he doesn’t realize at first. 

An interesting thing about the book (besides everything else?) was that it was originally published without the last chapter, which in my opinion ties the entire story together.  The book’s message is so altered by leaving it out, although if Burgess was going for something a bit different I could see that too.  The editor left it out for specific reasons, however, that Burgess explains in the foreward. 

A few times within the story, a character asks, “What’s it going to be then, eh?”  I saw this as another symbol for growing up, where you constantly seem to be asking yourself, “Where the hell am I going from here?”

Woven into the plot, of course, are the questions raised about free will and the choices we have as humans. I won’t give too much away, but you’ll come away with a lot on your mind.  Also I recommend reading the foreward after you’ve read the actual story, because a lot is given away that you shouldn’t know beforehand. (Including why he uses the made-up slang, which I won’t even get into.  Still don’t know what the fuck “grahzny” means.)

One more thing… Alex.  Or as he calls himself, Your Humble Narrator.  Couldn’t really figure him out.  He was pretty whiny most of the time, and at certain points I was just like dude wtf.  But I felt like there was something else to him that I was missing, like he was challenged in a Holden Caulfield kind of way.  Maybe he’s just stupid.  None of the characters went very deep, anyway, except for F. Alexander, another person I haven’t quite gotten a grasp on.  You’ll have to tell me what you think, but I feel like I’m going to be attempting the psychoanalysis of Alex for a while.

And now off to A Brave New World by Aldous Huxley, whose name is so particularly odd I’m not quite sure I’m pronouncing it right.

Love always,
GW

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Aunt Dimity Slays a Dragon, chapters 1-20

GW: I’m actually highly enjoying this book. Nancy Atherton is a very good writer and while the story is not the most exciting in the world, per-se, it is about a Renaissance festival, which is pretty rad. =]

Okay so the book is good, established; and I’m zooming right through it. Now for a more pressing issue: I WA NT TO GO TO A REN FEST!!! or at the very least acquire a fantastical medieval outfit. I’d make a pretty good wench, but I’m thinking that I’d look pretty good as duchess with a rose-colored wimple. (That’s the cone thing with the flowy fabric that women wear on their heads. I’m learning things.) Also in the book they keep talking about all this really good food. It makes me want the n0ms.

I like the fact that there is a dead aunt talking to the main character through a journal. It gives the otherwise average story of a country village in England a little awesome boost. I wish I had a dead English aunt to talk to through a magic journal. But hey, my life is just not that interesting. Apparently. >.<

So i think that I want to continue reading the books in this series. I started in the middle somewhere but w.e…it looks like the first one is Aunt Dimity’s Death…I mean i guess she has to die before she writes in the journal right? I dunno, I’m going out on a limb here.

Anywhoodles, I’ll give you the book as soon as I finish. I think you’ll like it. Also the girl has a really hot hubby. Make my life feel inadequate…jeez!

❤ GG

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things we do for fun: troll. =D

and eat. and cuddle.

currently reading:

GG: Aunt Dimity Slays a Dragon; by: Nancy Atherton

GW: A Clockwork Orange; by: Anthony Burgess

L: Green Eggs and Ham; by: Dr. Seuss

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