Monday, August 5, 2013

Friday, August 2, 2013


A DIFFERENT KIND OF IMPERFECTION  SHORT STORY REVIEW - This short story was published in the New Yorker--but, is part of the author’s longer work titled ‘Seduction Theory’--with a college student whose father dies of cancer. In A Different Kind of Imperfection by Thomas Beller, the protagonist returns to his mother’s home for Christmas vacation from university, after recently breaking up with his girlfriend. There are inanimate objects scattered all throughout the apartment that remind him of his childhood, about his mother as she is now, as well as piles of his father’s books. In particular, he zeroes in on ‘To the Lighthouse’ by Virginia Woolf with a business card, pencil marks and paper scraps found inside the book. The imagery is somber and restrained, reminiscent of Gilman’s ‘The Yellow Wallpaper’, which also makes an allusion to Virginia Woolf, as she descends into hysteria and madness. Cunningham’s book titled ‘The Hours’ (also a major motion picture) famously deals with Woolf’s suicide as she filled her coat pockets with rocks and drowned herself. The short story is a comment on what we leave behind when we are gone.