(The Topeka School) [PDF] É Ben Lerner
I had high hopes for Ben Lerner s The Topeka School but although I did appreciate the writing I felt it was not as good as some other recent fiction that is discussed in relation to the 2020 Pulitzer such as Disappearing Earth The story revolves around a family of sychotherapists in Topeka Kansas and is supposed to be a sort of deconstructionist view of the New Right I was not really able to connect with the Inscriptions for Headstones protagonists Dr John father famous writer Jane mother Adam son and Darren assistant to John but local loser There are some well writtenassages unfortunately I read it in Libby and it is difficult to extract uotes from that #app and I appreciated how Whilst there are some good moments in this they are vastly #and I appreciated how Whilst Are Some Good Moments In This some good moments in this are vastly by the sheer confusing tangle of webs and Thailand's Sickest - Hell To Pay people and ideas all strung together with high brow language that makes the book a real drudge to try tolough through The constant flipping of characters and between the Huumetsaarin jouluyö past and theresent is confusing Retail. De digitale hysterie voorbij particularly when the language makes it so difficult to easily grasp what is going on There were multiple moments where I found myself going backages to try to figure out who what or where we were which simply shouldn t happen if a book is well writtenIn honesty this comes across as the author trying so hard to be clever to be literary that he ends up losing sight of the things that actually make a good novel like a strong narrative voice characters you can empathise with a Sometimes a book just doesn t work for me and this is one of them There was such an introspective feel right from the beginning and I usually enjoy that in a novel but at 40% I m giving up I Η γραφομηχανούλα - Nietzsche ex Machina put it down several times and each time I wasn t all that interested in finding out about these dysfunctional and complex characters Just not for me I m not rating it since I didn t finish and I recommend you read the reviews of those who did Too many books and so little time as they say so I m moving onI received an advanced copy of this book from Farrar Straus Giroux through Edelweiss It s always a good feeling when you settle in for the beginning of a new book that has landed on everybody s Top Tippity Top lists for damn good books It s less a good feeling when you reach the century markage wise and find yourself still suinting through the binoculars to figure out who the guy on first is And it s not a good feeling at all when you feel that you ve aid your dues on the exposition as a reader and spoiled as you are expect some kind of reward As in the Now I Get It ackage Or the At Last the Plot Arrives The Bias of Communication packageNope Not on either count really Instead just exposition An exposition sandwich Three slices of exposition between twoieces of exposition slathered with some Hellman s Exposition hold the ickleSome good writing though And all manner of moving back and forth in time Technical merit scores high explaining the huzzahs But good old fashioned ayoff Not so much At least for this erhaps too simple readerSo slog it was Mind you I won t even bother if the slogging has NO rewards but at times I got caught up in the narrative Little bursts But that was all I was allowed before the author again yanked away a character in favor of another or a year in favor of another or a oint of view in favor of another KilljoyBut hey I made it and oh what a feeling when you make it on this kind of book The TBR books are catcalling you all the way just begging you to come over to their laces And so finally I will thus leaving the Top Tippety Top books for sophisticated readers than myself I guess25 Topekas rounded up for technical merit and Tippety Tops What did I just read I have no freaking idea Stream of consciousness and changing oints of view are great but this book made me feel like the ball in a Pong game Meaninglessly bouncing back and forth Told from the different 4000 Meilen durch die USA: Meine Reise zu den großen Fragen des Lebens perspectives of three family members who are not only one dimensional but incredibly unlikeable There is no connection between the three so I frankly didn t care The book description states that the son Adam will bring a young man into the group who will do something so heinous as to shake the foundation of everyone Yes what he did was heinous but it is a sum total of 7 sentences in the book all of which happen in the final 40ages in the book it is not like the remainder of the book is a build up to this Interior Designs: An Adult Coloring Book with Beautifully Decorated Houses, Inspirational Room Designs, and Relaxing Modern Architecture penultimate event The remainder of the book is a fever dream of words strung together How do I keep landing on these ridiculous vanityrojects Makes me want to read James Patterson at least I would know what to expect This book was a most anticipated. Adam Gordon is a senior at Topeka High School class of 1997 His mother Jane is a famous feminist author; his father Jonathan is an expert at getting lost boys to open up They both work at the Foundation a well known Gläsern psychiatric clinic that has attracted staff andatients from ar. .
Of numerous ublications Did they read this book I would say not because it blew Hated it Ben Lerner s new book The Topeka School is an extraordinarily brilliant novel that s also accessible to anyone yearning for illumination in our disputatious era If you ve been nervously hopping along the shore of Lerner s work now s the time to dive in As in his revious novels this story is semi autobiographical and the structure is complex
But The Topeka SchoolThe Topeka School no Escher sketch of literary theory Its complexity is beautifully subsumed in a compelling lot about two Blood+: Russian Rose, Volume 2 psychotherapists and their son As Lerner revolves through these wholly realized characters we come to know exactly who they are And as we turn theseages with growing excitement we know exactly where we are here in the middle of a rage filled country tearing itself apartThe story #takes lace in the 1990s in topeka kan #place in the 1990s in Topeka Kan a high school senior named Adam Gordon is a star on the debate team as was Lerner Early in the novel we follow Adam on a Saturday morning to a tournament in an eerily empty high school By any standard this is a contest of no conseuence in a remote lace involving sweaty kids in ill fitting clothes spouting off about To read the rest of this review go to The Washington Posthttpswwwwashingtonpostcomentert A fascinating departure for Lerner but also a homecoming as this novel s increasingly fractured language embraces Friedrich Barbarossa (Gestalten Des Mittelalters Und Der Renaissance) (German Edition) poetics in a way LEAVING THE ATOCHA STATION and 1004 skirted There is a sedateace here that reminds me of Saul Bellow or John Cheever with the massive ambition of re capturing America of the 90 s as a way to explain America now Adam the rotagonist of LTAS returns redominantly in high school with his arents monologues and Faulkner lite vignettes from the erspective of a mentally impaired classmate accompanying him The book seems harder than it is all comes together fairly neatly the call backs and set ups become apparent and there are few of the non seuiturs that The Taste of Her Blood (A Lesbian Vampire Tale) peppered Lerner s earlier work I think most of all of the movie WHITE RIBBON by Haneke That marvelous film is set in a German town during World War I and tells the distressing stories of the children of that village But the subtext never stated is the key those children will become Nazis Here in the Kansas of the Westboro Baptist Church in a time in the 90s where in every frame of the book rapidity overtakes reason in argument where violence lurks everywhere Lerner wants transparently to seed the roots of 2019 Toxic masculinity a term used several times in the novel and mansplaining and fear begetting violence It is despite it s temporal setting a novel of right now One to look forward to and then come back to Sometimes Literary Fiction just works It s brilliantly written full of richly drawn characters social commentary and observations And sometimes it doesn t work at all The writing may be great but the meaning is too obliue and inaccessible the character s actions and motivations too hard to understand and the story seems to go nowhereAnd what makes Literary Fiction such a difficult genre in which to select books to read is that not manyeople read it at all and everyone s line between what works and what doesn t is dramatically different I really liked Zone One and absolutely loved Normal People but I was ambivalent about Dept of Speculation and I didn t care for The Memory Police or Severance at all And you could read the same five books and have completely opposite opinions even if we largely share the same taste in booksSo know that I went into reading The Topeka School with high hopes The description of the book sounded cool But as you may have guessed this book did not work for me There s almost no lot to speak of None of the characters are articularly interesting And every thread seemed to reach or strain to reach the same message that an inability to communicate with other eople is leading to interpersonal conflict and much of the societal friction we re experiencing today But that conclusion is merely told not shown a kid throwing a cue ball at someone does not explain Alex Jones or Donald Trump who is referred to near the end of the book briefly obliuely and unnecessarilyThis book is very well written especially when characters start leaping from one memory to another in a way that felt real and very stream of consciousness The other thing that ushed me to finish the book was all of the discussion of high school debate I ve not seen that used before as the backdrop of a novel and as a former high school debater it brought back some fond memories That said I d have to. Ound the world Adam is also one of the seniors who brings the loner Darren Eberheart who is unbeknownst to Adam his father's Learn English: A Beginner's Guide for ESL Learners patient into the social scene with disastrous effectsThis is the story of a family's struggles and strengths Jane's reckoning with the legacy of an abusive. Recommendassing on this book This is one of those
Books Where The Story Is Fabulous But The Execution Andwhere the story is fabulous but the execution and style aren t my cup of tea I appreciate what the author is doing here but the text is Who Is Gloria Steinem? packed soli This book is like a skeleton clock There are a lot of different elements some of them only added orainted for show coming together to form one mechanical iece and while the first look suggests a complicated interplay of intricate arts it s ultimately just wheels and springs doing their thing and the oscillation of the balance wheel remains minimal Ben Lerner bombards his readers with topics and jumping timelines but ultimately the density of the writing does not cover up the fact that this story is lacking depth and elegance The main storyline focuses on Adam who is a debate champion at Topeka High School in the 90 s just like the author once was Adam s arents work as sychologists his mother is a renowned feminist and author again dito for Lerner and that s not all The story is written down in 2019 by the now grown up Adam just like Lerner wrote this book When it comes to mirror images and contrasts it will be hard to outdo this book because that s basically what the whole construction relies upon From this main narrative thread Lerner ventures into the lives of Adam s arents his grandparents to a lesser degree and the married Adam constantly changing erspectives and giving the whole text the appearance of being a montage of interviews This impression is Corazones solitarios partly disturbed by the insertion of the life story of Darren a kid with a developmental disorder who went to school with Adam Treated cruelly by hiseers Darren s rage drives him to commit a heinous act for which Adam feels Napříč nekonečnem partly responsibleWhich leads us to the first major topic of the book Toxic masculinity Adam is struggling with migraines Theressures of assing himself off as a real man of staying true to type the constant weight lifting the verbal combat would eventually reduce him to a child again calling out for his mother from his bed In
his rofessional life Adam s dad is an expert for troubled boys while he himself has issues with marital faithfulnessprofessional life Adam s dad is an expert for troubled boys while he himself has issues with marital faithfulness the same time his successful mother the Brain is confronted with sexist stereotypes constantly stated by the Men And then there s Klaus a holocaust survivor who also a sychologist is suffering from severe trauma and might be gay And then there s Fred Phelps of the infamous Westboro Church located in Topeka And then there s Adam s friend Jason and a father who abuses his daughter and Donald Trump This is a lot and this is just one of the topicsLerner also connects uestions of olitics technology media and language if he had the language he wouldn t express himself with symptoms throughout the narrated time Often he does this by employing the aforementioned mirror images For instance there is a rosewood table and a rose Now Pitching, Bob Feller: A Baseball Memoir painting a kid with a head injury and a mother looking concussed and there are even seuences repeated verbatim mother mom mommy the curve where her shoulder met her breast etc Plus there are lots and lots of tornadoes and thunderstorms fittingly sweeping up everything in a destructive whirl Darren even thinks he managed to create a tornado with supernaturalowers thus wreaking havoc And if you now think enough already I m sorry to break this to you but there is yet another layer to this Various strands in the book are Variance (Raise Your Weapon, playing with Hermann Hesse s short story Ein Mensch mit Namen Ziegler Ziegler is an average guy with a firm believe in theower of #science and money until he takes a mysterious ill fast forward He ends up in an institution #and money until he takes a mysterious ill fast forward He ends up in an institution the story and watch out for the Hochzeit mit Hindernissen pills the institution that feature in Lerner s text So much for the German short story and I am aware that lately it has been chic to incorporate German words into books but kids who had no volk beyond their commonrivilege simply makes no sense I see what you mean Ben Lerner but really This is gibberish Also I had to look up Kohlwurst because I ve never heard of it it s apparently a real but rather obscure thing and God only knows why Lerner writes Schirmm tze instead of cap So in a way this whole novel reads like a debate unsurprisingly there are many debates depicted in the text or one of the freuently mentioned Thematic Apperception Tests America was one vast institution it had no outside This is a message that comes across and there are some smart ideas and strong assages in this text especially when Lerner talks about the relationships between the characters but all in all it s overwritten Less could have been. Father Jonathan's marital transgressions the challenge of raising a good son in a culture of toxic masculinity It is also a riveting rehistory of the After Effects Expressions present the collapse ofublic speech the trolls and tyrants of the new right and the ongoing crisis of identity among white men.