Wednesday, February 27, 2008

Just finished "Sitting Up With The Dead" by Pamela Petro. The book recounts a series of journeys undertaken by the author to the Southern United States during the summer of 1999. Through the medium of stories, the great oral tradition of the south, Petro wishes to discover what it is that makes the south so different. What makes it tick. Along the way Petro meets storytellers from various ethnic backgrounds who make the south their home. Creole, African American, Cajun, white. The author travels to from the Appalachian Mountains to the gulf coast and from the Bayous of Louisiana to the mundane interior in her pursuit of stories and their tellers. Petro encounters Brer Rabbit, The Grey Man and a menagerie of other characters on her southern odyssey.

While the stories themselves are fascinating, entertaining colourful and absorbing the only weak link is in Petro's relating of her journey. The whole thing doesn't quite fit together easily.


Monday, February 18, 2008

I watched the film, then read the book. To be honest I found the films ending very disappointing. The book of course has much more to offer. Cormac McCarthy easily captures the timbre of southern vocabulary. Perhaps you should really read the book before seeing the film.


Wednesday, February 13, 2008

John Fante is a genius, Five Stars for this novel which tells of the early years of the young Arturo Bandini growing up amid poverty in Colorado. We encounter Bandini's family, brothers father and mother all of whom shaped the fictional character who would later venture to Los Angeles in search of literary fame.


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