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Friday, October 31, 2008

Losers and losers

Two new reviews of Losers! Mordy Shinefield in the Forward seems to like me ("charming," "idiosyncratic") but most of the review is spent discussing how I'm not like Philip Roth. Duh. I don't like Philip Roth, I've only gotten to the end of one of his books ("The Ghost Writer") -- and I finish almost any book I read -- the man he reminds me of the pedophile uncle I never had. When people ask if I'm related to the "famous Roth," I always pretend they're talking about David Lee. The review ends by saying that "The real point Roth is making in 'Losers' is that, like Jupiter Glazer, Judaism has gone mainstream," which I don't think has anything to do with the book -- the fact of Jupiter's Judaism is only mentioned twice, both times in reference to the Jewish Federation helping his immigrant parents find jobs, which I don't think is very hipster-Jewish at all.

The other review, in JVibe, is from someone who's 14 -- I love it when actual teenagers review teen books, since the "teen book" industry is like 90% people like me, who haven't been teenagers for a good long while, but still wish we were. "The book manages without a lot of plot or adventure to keep readers glued...What defines being a 'loser' isn't an environment, but an attitude." Rock.

The reading on Wednesday went pretty superbly. Katie Finn's "Top 8" is a Facebook book that manages to pull off the conceit nicely, and makes me question my the world's doubts about Aaron Sorkin's Facebook movie. And have you ever heard of Lauren Henderson? She's British and sassay as anything and I don't even know if that's the right page for her, but it does show her books. At one point, David the moderator encouraged us to go outside and start a rumble. At the time, I kind of froze because I wasn't sure whether the audience would have followed us out. But in retrospect, why would I have doubted it??

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