This week, I downloaded the audiobook for The Circle off Libby because it relates to something I'm researching at the moment.
I am at the supermarket, walking through the aisles, when I press play. The narrator begins:
"There wasn't any limit, no boundary at all, to the future. And it would be so a man wouldn't have room to store his happiness."
I pressed pause. Hold up. What what what?? That is an AMAZING opening to a novel. Have I been vastly underestimating The Circle all this time? Dave Eggers did not come here to play!
Then I press play again. The narrator continues:
"...John Steinbeck, East of Eden."
The epigraph. Lmao.
I watched Years and Years, that BBC/HBO show, which I found fascinating with reservations. It's schmaltzy and also bumbling when it tries to be progressive, but it's exciting to see something so obvious in this genre mishmash come together and work as a blended genre. Here's a big family epic, but instead of beginning with grandma and grandpa in WWII, let's start in the now and progress fifty years into the future. It moves along pretty naturally. I think they pulled a lot of futurey punches, so it feels more grounded. I want to call it tea towel sci-fi. It's more like a cozy mystery than kitchen sink dystopia. Cozy dystopia!
Then I read Universal Harvester, which I loved to pieces. Stayed up late to finish. And when I did, I emailed a few people “have you read this???” It’s not a cozy dystopia but it’s pretty cozy and dark. But the place where it is dark is also uplifting. It is the perfect thing to read in this late August, when nothing is really happening, but you're not exactly excited for things to start happening.
Thanks for reading.