Read/read/reading: Bright Wall/Dark Room, Issue 1; Up in the Air, by Walter Kirn; Drive, by James Sallis.

(Minor declaration of interest: I write sometimes for BWDR, though none of my work appears in the first or second issues.)

First off, the first issue of BWDR’s Newsstand app is everything I hoped it would be - excellently-designed, featuring illustrations like this and containing some of the best writing they’ve ever published. It’s an extremely solid start (and contains nothing like this tripe), and I can’t wait to see where it goes next. It’s a hallmark of an excellent publication when you’re a contributor who honestly doesn’t care if his work is included or not, so long as it continues to be good; that’s exactly what I felt reading this.

Up In The Air is an odd book. The film is decidedly different - the one entirely sympathetic character is missing in the novel, and the Ryan Bingham as written in prose is a lot more jaded and on edge than smooth-talking George Clooney ever could be. I’m hesitant to say too much about this - I’ll be saving it for an upcoming podcast - but I liked it a lot, despite a couple of issues with narrative voice that came up once in a while. Overall, though, Walter Kirn is a brilliant writer, and this ranks amongst the best of his work.

Drive is in-keeping with the film-oriented stuff I’ve been reading; oddly, I haven’t yet seen the film, despite the fact that it contains two huge crushes of mine, but I’m still interested nevertheless. Brooding, ultraviolent existentialism is how I got into reading in the first place.


  1. chris posted this