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"Before you know it as the years go by, you're just like other people you have seen, with all those peculiar human ailments. Just another vehicle for temper and vanity and rashness and all the rest. Who wants it? Who needs it? These things occupy the place where a man's soul should be." -- Henderson the Rain King

Wednesday, January 09, 2008

The Best American Nonrequired Reading 2007

The first book of my fourth shot at the fifty book challenge was The Best American Nonrequired Reading 2007 (that's a lotta numbers for one sentance).

I'm not exactly sure what makes the stuff in this book non-required, but I am sure that it's all darned good. There are several pieces well worth reading, but some that particularly stood out to me were Alison Bechdel's comic "A Happy Death", Jennifer Egan's "Selling the General", Kevin A. Gonzalez's "Loteria", Nam Le's "Love and Honor and Pity and Pride and Compassion and Sacrifice" and David J. Morris' "The Big Suck: Notes from the Jarhead Underground". Conan O'Brien's high school commencement speech is also pretty durn funny.

To top it off, courtesy of the 'other notables' index in the back of the book I found out that Padgett Powell published a piece in Subtropics a cool new(ish) literary zine published by my beloved University of Florida. Sweet!

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