Friday, August 26, 2016

Eggers

Reading Eggers' Heroes of the Frontier and wondering why he didn't call it Heroines of the Frontier since the central character, the one whose head we're inside, is a woman--a former dentist who has a loose-bowled ex-husband and two children--one brave and reckless (the girl) and one introspective and protective (the boy). She's at a crossroads in her life and decides to rent a rickety RV and take her children to Alaska to visit her friend/rival, Samantha. I thought I wouldn't like the book that much because I've been mostly reading mysteries, but it is funny and unexpected and not too big for its own britches. I also was resistant to the male author borrowing the female experience to tell the story, but it would be something else completely if the main character were a single dad--you'd have to focus on the weirdness of that, and he would almost be saintified by society for raising two kids on his own--so, I guess Eggers needed her to be a woman. She's also not preoccupied with finding a man--her focus is on figuring out who she's supposed to be, where she's supposed to be, what she's supposed to be. It's highly relatable and maybe highly American--this idea that in the land of opportunity, there are almost too many choices, too many ways to be dissatisfied. He writes this whole long great paragraph about disappointment that I am too lazy to retype here.

On the flip side, I know someone who knows DE and says he's an asshole. I guess it's not necessary that you like the writer, but I am disappointed that he's not a totally awesome guy (according to my source).

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