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review 2017-11-18 09:36
First Person
First Person: A novel - Richard Flanagan

by Richard Flanagan

 

Penniless Tasmanian writer Kif Kehlmann is hired to ghost write a memoir for a corporate criminal, Siegfried Heidl, in six weeks. His research to write the autobiography takes a frustrating form when his subject is reluctant to answer questions that might only further incriminate him when he's already facing prison.

 

The need for money keeps Kif on board, even when his better judgement tells him to walk away. The story is told in first person, in a style reminiscent of old detective noir, yet portraying a man who was anything but in control of his own destiny.

 

The story takes a while to get to the meat, but slowly Kif starts getting inside the mentality of a professional con man who doesn't really want the actual details of his life story displayed so much as a comfortable fiction that will serve his purposes.

 

As the struggle to glean details goes on, Kif starts to question everything he thinks he knows about his world, even who he is, why he got married, how he feels about having children and why he calls himself a novelist when he's never managed to finish a novel. Worse, Heidl begins to tell the truth.

 

This is a real psychological mind bender that falls into place gradually, the details of what physically happens secondary to the play on perceptions. I found it interesting, but depressing.

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text 2017-11-12 19:46
Square 14: I've read 58%.
First Person: A novel - Richard Flanagan

"set in the Southern Hemisphere"

 

One of my Netgalley books is set in Australia. The main character is from Tasmania. :)

 

Do we have any Australians here? I'm just wondering if his name, Kif, is common there.

 

 

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text 2017-11-04 17:04
Square 8: Hanukka task
First Person: A novel - Richard Flanagan

I'm trying not to add too many books to my backlog from Bingo. As it happens, I was just finishing up one of the Netgalley books I've had waiting and was about to choose which of the 4 remaining Netgalley books to focus on next. The virtual dreidel task fit right in!

 

So, First Person it is.

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text 2017-10-24 11:23
Post-Bingo Reading
The Toy Makers - Robert Dinsdale
Devil's Day - Andrew Michael Hurley
Fools and Mortals - Bernard Cornwell
Ramses the Damned: The Passion of Cleopatra - Anne Rice,Christopher Rice
First Person: A novel - Richard Flanagan
Lava Storm In the Neighborhood (Giant Tales Apocalypse 10-Minute Stories) (Volume 1) - Paul D. Scavitto,Sharon Willett,Stephanie Baskerville,Robert Tozer,Shae Hamrick,Christian W. Freed,Rebecca Lacy,Douglas G. Clarke,Mike Boggia,Sylvia Stein,Gail Harkins,Glenda Reynolds,Lynette White,Randy Dutton,Joyce Shaughnessy,Amos Andrew Parker,Laura S

With all my Bingo card books read and just waiting around for calls, I thought I would launch into reading my backlog of Netgalley books and finish off the anthology I've had on my currently reading shelf for months now. There's only a couple of stories left in the anthology so might as well finish.

 

I've started reading three of the Netgalley books and all are at least reasonably good so far. The other two look interesting but I'm going to get further in the ones I've started before I start new reads. Probably just a few days delay so that I'm not just getting a handle of 5 stories at once.

 

Once I've got on top of those, I still have 5 pages of Horror books in my Bingo folder because I had back-ups picked out for the categories where I was ferreting out possibilities from my free books slush pile. I've been threatening to clear the slush for ages so I think I'll start with those.

 

As soon as I start finishing off Netgalley reads, I'll also start alternating with my A-list so that I've always got one of those going. Then there is the Samples folder. I had accrued 12 new samples at the beginning of September. A lot of interesting books have come down my feed during Bingo and I've just been ordering samples freely to look at later. I now have 115 waiting. Um, yeah. I'll probably bounce between clearing those and the free books slush.

 

At any rate, I have no lack of books to read while the game finishes off. Wheeee!

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review 2017-10-21 00:00
Spy of the First Person
Spy of the First Person - Sam Shepard Spy of the First Person - Sam Shepard https://msarki.tumblr.com/post/166647928548/spy-of-the-first-person-by-sam-shepard

The death of Sam Shepard creates a sudden void in the landscape of contemporary literature. This talented writer, dramatist, horseman, actor, and musician leaves as his final gift to those of us fortunate to have known his body of work a thinly veiled memoir of the first rank. In prose reminiscent at times of his good friend Patti Smith, Shepard eventually recounts the last of his precious days on earth surrounded by his loving family and friends. In one poignant sentence Shepard affirms that in a span of one year he went from being a fiercely independent and private wanderer traveling in his pickup truck to a man in a wheelchair who can barely raise his head and cannot possibly wipe his own ass. There is nothing sentimental or self-serving in this book. Shepard’s honesty on the page remains as seething as his life. A testament to one great artist, and for some, a very good friend.
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