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Lost (in books) in Los Angeles

I spend six days a week around books, then come home and play with them some more. Won't you help me play?

Currently reading

Cat's Cradle
Kurt Vonnegut
The Arabian Nights: Tales from a Thousand and One Nights
A.S. Byatt, Richard Francis Burton, Anonymous
Death of Kings
Bernard Cornwell
Crash - J.G. Ballard Another book that my roommate suggested. This one also involved a lot of semen and sodomy (though nowhere near as much as Ancient evenings - sodomy, that is, there might be as much semen). I sometimes get the feeling when reading books like this, or seeing art-house movies, that I'm kind of a failure. I emerge from the experience saying "wait, what?" and feeling frustrated because I have no idea what happened. I get the basic plot. The narrator (James Ballard - tricky author makes it easy for me to remember the character's name) is in a horrific car accident, spends time in a hospital recovering, becomes involved with the widow of the man who was killed in his car accident, and meets Vaughan. I was trying to come up with an adjective that would describe Vaughan, but he's a whole heap of contradictions. He's a handsome man with an attractive body, but he's been badly disfigured to the point of being almost grotesque. He's charming, but also rather creepy and stalkerish. He's a complex character who seems to slowly lose his mind over the course of the book, culminating in his fatal car accident (not a spoiler, you read about it on the first page). I had the unsettling feeling that Ballard (the narrator) was slowly transforming into Vaughan, as Vaughan started wasting away. Would the culmination of that transformation be the scene where he has sex with Vaughan? I'm glad that finally happened, by the way. The sexual tension was killing me.There was a lot of sex, but most of it was passionless. Maybe that was the point, but it all felt really emotionless. I had the same problem when I read The day of creation. Perhaps Ballard (author) and I are just not meant to be.Time to go re-watch the movie, which I remember as being suitably bizarre. Cronenberg and Ballard, a match made in heaven.