Saturday, May 28, 2005

After spending much of the last few months engrossed in the world of Japanese fiction, I wandered over the pacific to America, and to the world of the gentle humorist in particular.

Firstly I spent some time in the company of David Sedaris, by way of his book "Dress your family in corduroy and denim." Over recent years Sedaris has become a very popular figure in the states, though less well known over here. I'd listened to him reading a few pieces on the web and I think it helps to have the sound and tone of his voice in your head and you read in stories. The humour is gentle, and the slightly perplexed tone of his voice helps to set the mood, allowing these very personal stories to weave their magic.

Now I'm back in the company of an old friend, Wobegone Boy by Garrison Keillor is proving to be a real treat. I loved his early stuff, indeed Lake Wobegone days is still one of my favourite books. Whilst reading it, I would often stop to read passages to Orynthia. In fact when book reviews say that a certain book made them laugh out loud, I never quite trust them, mainly because I seldom laugh out loud whilst reading. To me the highest praise is to say that a book made me want to read out loud. It's got to be pretty good to that. Wobegone Boy does read as a more substantial book them some of his pieces, in fact it's reminding me of The Corrections by Jonathan Franzen at the moment, surely the best American novel of recent years.

Today we are off for a brunch meet with some friends before taking a look at the Hope Centre market.


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