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  • The Dog Stars

    I don't often read fiction, but today I'm recommending The Dog Stars, something I listened to while driving by the corn fields of Central Ohio last week.

    It's the story of a man who finds himself in a world that has been devastated by a terminal flu epidemic. The few people left seek to survive by any means necessary – most through deception and violence.

    Two lines struck me as especially relevant. I haven't the book itself but am trusting my memory in this case.

    It shouldn't have been meek. There must have been a better translation. It should be simple. It's the simple who will inherit the earth. And not inherit; own. They already own it.

    And

    I could no longer distinguish between memory and dream.
    Like many, I tend to like books when I can relate to the protagonist. In this book, he's for more capable physically than I've ever become, but he's also become able to do things he never thought possible. I can relate.

    Oh yes, he also lives in a world that no longer contains the familiar and the normally justified.

    I can certainly relate to that.
    Barrett L. Dorko

  • #2
    I think that the future has already arrived, and that it's dystopic.

    Do you?
    Barrett L. Dorko

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    • #3
      Hi Barrett!

      Like many, I tend to like books when I can relate to the protagonist. In this book, he's for more capable physically than I've ever become, but he's also become able to do things he never thought possible.
      I Kindled that book and will start reading it tonight.

      I understand your point about the protagonist.

      I once had an antagonist....but she died....

      Sorry, old classroom humor....

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      • #4
        Ken,

        I'd like to let the author know of my recommendation but his email won't work.

        I heard him interviewed on Fresh Air after I'd ordered the book but hadn't begun listening yet.
        Barrett L. Dorko

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        • #5
          I'm wondering if anyone else is going to read this book.
          Barrett L. Dorko

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          • #6
            Karen has just included a quote from Amazon's book description in this thread. (post #13)

            It fits perfectly what many here find the courage to do.
            Barrett L. Dorko

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            • #7
              Hi Barrett!

              I finished Dog Stars last night. I really enjoyed the book. Many passages reminded me of Hemingway's notebook style of writing in works such "Big Two Hearted River. I like authors who experiment with the language where the lines between poetry and prose seem blurred.

              Some may not like Heller's stream of conciousness technique, but it works because he is so good at creating energy-charged, suspensefull scenes.

              Others may feel his writing style doesn't lead to elegant, insightful, or quotable passages. but I found many like that:

              "That it has come to this: life distilled in ratty blanked. The shot will never hit, the bird never fall but neither will that hunter ever miss"

              I kept thinking of Keats's "Ode on a Grecian Urn" while reading this.

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              • #8
                Brief sentences. Thoughts succinctly stated. Declarative. Hemmingwayesque.

                Hard to do.
                Barrett L. Dorko

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                • #9
                  Hi Barrett!

                  Brief sentences. Thoughts succinctly stated. Declarative. Hemmingwayesque.

                  Hard to do.
                  Certainly hard to do well.

                  I like your analysis. Hope everyone caught that your description reflected the style itself.

                  You're too good a writer for me not to catch that!

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                  • #10
                    Brief sentences. Thoughts succinctly stated. Declarative. Hemmingwayesque.
                    Which is why, neuroscientist or not, I can't read Proust.

                    And I've tried, many, many times.
                    Carol Lynn Chevrier LMT
                    " The truth is, people may see things differently. But they don't really want to. '' Don Draper.

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