Sin City My timid foray in the world of comic books (or graphic novels) continues with Sin City (so far, only volume 1). If you want to go through the plot, check wikipedia or the movie (of which I actually have no clear memories except the vague impression that I liked it in spite of Mickey Rourke) – all I can say is that I had fun with it. I liked the sketchy art and the noir vibe – and I’ll be getting the whole series.
Rosencrantz and Guildenstern Are Dead I haven’t read a play since highschool, if I’m being honest, I don’t really think I even know how to read a play. But I really wanted to give Tom Stoppard a try – and I found myself enjoying his humor quite a bit. Sure, you get so much more out of this is you know more than the basic plot of Hamlet – but even for the uninitiated there are some delightful moments of absurdity and linguistic ambiguity.
The Gourmet Club There are 6 stories – and when I read the first story – I hated it. It kinda made me feel…icky, for lack of a better word – like I really needed to take a scalding hot shower. I might be overreacting here – after all, it just wasn’t my cup of tea; but it did make me consider abandoning the whole book. Then a week passed, and I got to read the second story, then the third…and halfway through the fifth I realized I’m enjoying myself a great deal. The general themes don’t stray too far from those in the first story – it’s all about obsession and its power of submission, with the occasional perversion dropped in to spice things up – but since none of the other 5 stories involved kids, I felt a lot more comfortable with them. The Two Acolytes reminded me a bit of Narcisuss and Goldmund – with the young disciple leaving a Buddhist temple to understand what the outside world really is like, while The Gourmet Club gave me this nagging déjà-vu feeling that I still can’t escape, since I’m pretty sure I’ve read something similar, but I can’t figure out what or by whom (yeah, that’s exactly how far I can rely on my memory 😦 ). The story is about a group of friends in search of the ultimate culinary sensation, leading to an all consuming obsession to find that one dish that will satisfy them. In Mr. Bluemound, Mr. Tanizaki dips into obsession again – this time though it’s of a sexual nature, when the title character discloses that his fascination with an actress (or rather – her body parts) has led him to create blowup dolls in her image. All throughout these stories there is a lyrically eerie atmosphere that just draws you in – and I think that’s what I liked best about the book.