My Whole Expanse I Cannot See…

I formulate infinity stored deep inside of me…

Speaker for the Dead

June 11th, 2008 | Category: Opinions

So, I finished Orson Scott Card’s Speaker for the Dead.  Speaker for the Dead is the second book in a series continuing the story of Andrew “Ender” Wiggin, former destroyer of worlds. Because of the nature of space travel and the way time works while traveling at the speed of light, Ender’s a man in his early 30s who has lived for over 3000 calendar years, giving the series quite an epic feel.

I’m not here to talk about the first book, Ender’s Game, which was spectacular, I’m here to focus on this the second book. Speaker for the Dead is really a book about truth and how freeing it can be to live a life in which all secrets are laid bare. A Speaker is akin to one reading a eulogy at a memorial service, but rather than paint deceased in the best possible way, they simply tell the story of a life, factually and impartially. A Speaker tells of everything from acts of kindness to one’s flaws and sins, honestly and completely. Yes, it can be a painful process for those left behind, but ultimately, it allows them to examine their relationship with the deceased and their relationships with each other without lies and false pretenses. It’s beautiful, really. In a way, it’s kind of how I see Ira Glass and what he did for me.

At any rate, read Speaker for the Dead, it’s an amazing experience.

My next audio book is Water for Elephants by Sara Gruen.



June 04th, 2008 | Category: Opinions

I just finished Chuck Palahniuk’s latest, Snuff. I’m not quite certain how I feel about it. While reading it, it wasn’t my favorite of his works, yet the last four chapters kind of won me over. Snuff is the story of Cassie Wright and her attempt to break the world’s record for the most sex partners in a single work of pornography, 600 to be exact. The story is told from the perspective of three fellows waiting in line for a go at Cassie and the “talent wrangler,” the woman in charge of the 600 fellow gang-bang.

My first problem was that I just find the sex industry astonishingly depressing, and not in a fun Dawn of the Dead sort of way. Secondly, I couldn’t really like or relate to any of the characters. I suppose it’s a good thing that I have nothing in common with a bunch of porn fiends, but what I usually love about Palahniuk is that I do tend to identify with or feel empathy toward his characters. That said, it’s a short book and the last four chapters are amazing, so I have no regrets.

Continuing with Palahniuk, I’m now reading Choke. I’ve also got an audio book on deck, Orson Scott Card’s Speaker for the Dead.