16 October 2016

Domestic Violets

Read: 16 Oct, 2016
Book: Domestic Violets
Author: Matthew Norman
Rating: ⭐️⭐️⭐️ 3/5 

It's a simple story told well. The setting of the book is of a closet writer, son of a Pulitzer winning author, with a dead-end soulless job, crazy set of parents and step parents, and a marriage in question mark? So in all a modern American family. It could have been a sitcom on Comedy Central and I would have a laugh or two on it in the evenings after the drudgery of my daily job, imagining my own aspirations of being a writer some day. 

Yes that summarizes the story very well. The novel is very now and real with all the references to popular TV shows, literary magazines, blogging, Hollywood and American fiction, the literary awards and book agents, 2008 financial crisis and Lehman (very relateable to me) and Obama, and lifestyle comparisons between Washington and New York. 

But the part I like the most is the musings of an author, the process of imagining, writing and getting a book out - "listening to all those men upstairs". When you know there is a story to be told you know it needs to be told! The various styles and themes of different authors. What is that inspires and what sells! The lines and quotes, used as instruments to tell a story... here are some from the book - 

"Backstory," she says "A narrative used to provide history or context."
That is why two English majors should never argue. 

"The last few weeks you've have acting like someone who's about to do something stupid." It sounds like something a character would say in one of my dad's books - books that often feature men sprinting toward their own entirely self-orchestrated demise. 

I'm the star of a public service announcement cautioning viewers of the horrors of infidelity. 

She moves her lips when she reads silently to herself. 

One of the annoying things about friendship is that there are these people in your life who can call you on your bullshit at any given moment. 

That's just for the drama, it's the gesture that's important. 

I can always tell when a book is done because I start to hate it. And I still love this one a little. 

That's me giving myself a tough love speech. I am going to start doing that more often, I've decided. One might as well put his inner monologue to good use. 

Finally the list of authors favorite reads: 'Straight Man' to 'High Fidelity' the themes that run across the book - 


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