Monday, February 27, 2006

A Taxonomy of Barnacles by Galt Niederhoffer

[did not finish]

I guess the first question you have to ask yourself when deciding whether to keep reading this book is:
Do you think that having every character's name start with the letter B is fun, or annoying?
Because it comes up.

We have:
Bridget
Bell
Benita
Beth
Belinda
Beryl
Barry
Billy
Bunny
Blaine
Boyd
Brant
Bates
Brad
Boris
Ben
Blake
Bella

and then, to emphasize his outsider status, there is poor Christopher, called "Trot", who is Bridget's boyfriend (or is it Bell's?) but of course she's really in love with Billy, or possibly Blaine, whichever one was the Red Sox fan.

And then there's this whole thing about how the father [there are six sisters] wants them each to try and make the family name famous, and whoever is most successful will get a bunch of money...but I skipped ahead to the end to make sure that I wasn't missing some great ending, and it turns out to be a total anticlimax anyway.

Despite the really excellent cover with its convenient diagram of the main characters and their names and ages [which must be referred to approximately twice a sentence], this book just kind of made me want to put a pillow over my head and scream.

2 Comments:

Anonymous skreed said...

I just started this book and I'm trying to decide if it's as clever as Booklist and others say it is, or if it is a waste of time. It reminds me somewhat of "Observatory Mansions" but it's wildly confusing. I'm also interested by the review split between periodicals (thumbs up), which are admittedly vested in selling books; and regular folks (thumbs down) who like to read. Now that I've put off reading it for a half hour or so and some blood has returned to my brain, I think I'll set it aside and read "Can't Stop, Won't Stop" by Jeff Chang instead.

5:00 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

hmm... i'm discouraged from even looking to see if this book is in at my local liberry. and i don't have a pillowsheet close... but yes, annoying.

6:35 PM  

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