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Consider the Lobster and Other Essays Cover Image
ISBN: 9780316013321
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Published: Back Bay Books - July 2nd, 2007

Consider the Lobster is a collection of essays comprised of creative nonfiction as well as journalistic endeavors that range in scope from the 2000 McCain presidential campaign to the sad reality of the pornography industry. While still humorous, Consider the Lobster forces us to think about the current (and seemingly perpetual) capitalist climate that permits such flawed, twisted, and arguably immoral industries and norms.This collection is for any contemplative American who wishes to have their political, emotional, and/or intellectual dispositions challenged - or even perhaps reinforced. Recommended for readers who don't mind a bit of rigor when it comes to their reading material. 

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The Stranger Cover Image
ISBN: 9780679720201
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Published: Vintage - March 13th, 1989

The Stranger is a short story that lays out the fundamentals of the philosophical idea of the Absurd. The Absurd is - in a way - an opening of the eyes to the indifference of the world. Camus described the book as 'the nakedness of man faced with the absurd'. How do we carry on in a world that appears to have no meaning? What do we do in the face of injustice? How do we conduct an analysis of morality? All these questions are grappled with in The Stranger. By far the best book I've read so far in 2017!

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Civilwarland in Bad Decline: Stories and a Novella Cover Image
By George Saunders, Joshua Ferris (Introduction by)
ISBN: 9780812987683
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Published: Random House Trade - April 26th, 2016

Civilwarland in Bad Decline is Saunders's first published compilation of short stories. The collection is insanely funny and clever. Saunders explores the American condition through what is called 'dirty realism', which uses average characters (and mundane language) in order to speak to some deeper truth(s) transpiring under the surface of the nation. Saunders creates a monolith out of the theme-park-esque nature that the U.S. has fallen into. Materialism, consumerism, entertainment and money rule the day - but at what expense...

Saunders is the country's leading satirist - and this piece of work makes a beautiful case for just that. A leading voice in contemporary American Literature - Saunders is a voice you can't afford to go without!

Infinite Jest Cover Image
By David Foster Wallace, Tom Bissell (Foreword by)
ISBN: 9780316306058
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Published: Back Bay Books - February 23rd, 2016

.My favorite book! Infinite Jest is perhaps the most informative piece of commentary on the contemporary state of America. The narrative primarily takes places and shifts between a presitigious tennis academy (Enfield Tennis Academy) and the Ennet Halfway House. Infinite Jest is full of charm and wit, difficult societal analyses and internal existential ruminations, and Wallace posseses a special ability to bring out what many of us think but are unable to put into words. This book changed my life. I read it every year. Yes, it's long. Yes, it's heavy (in every sense of the word). Yes, it demands a lot from the reader. But the payoff is one of a reckoning and understanding of the validity of your own thoughts. Infinite Jest is the epitome of that special communication with which art has monopolized. This is what a novel is supposed to be!

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Girl with Curious Hair Cover Image
ISBN: 9780393313963
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Published: W. W. Norton & Company - February 17th, 1996

Girl with Curious Hair is stupid funny and intellectually stimulating. If you are looking for a piece of work to challenge your intellect and question all that you hold to be true about the world, then you need to take a tour through the pages of this collection. It'll make you laugh; it'll make you angry; it'll make you wonder what the hell Wallace is talking about. 

A literary voice that will be missed greatly. Read this work! You won't regret it - but don't forget your thinking cap - you'll need it!

A Heartbreaking Work of Staggering Genius Cover Image
ISBN: 9780375725784
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Published: Vintage - February 13th, 2001

Part autobiographical, part fiction - Dave Eggers tells the tale of his personal journey - one of heartache and staggeringly steep challenges - first with the loss of both his parents within the same three-month period. By default, Dave is forced to care for his seven year-old brother, Toph, at the mild age of twenty-one - all the while attempting to cultivate a career in high-art with the advent of a literary magazine entitled Might Magazine. A Pulitzer Prize Finalist and a leading voice in postmodern literature, Eggers attempts to communicate to us the paradoxical essence of what it is to feel alone in a world where we are surrounded by human interaction, relationships and affection.

The Broom of the System: A Novel (Penguin Ink) Cover Image
By David Foster Wallace, Duke Riley (Illustrator)
ISBN: 9780143116936
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Published: Penguin Books - June 29th, 2010

.A beautiful book! A woman in her early twenties, Lenore Beadsman, has just been informed that her grandmother, Lenore Beadsman, has went missing from her nursing home. A personal investigation of the granddaughter ensues. This book focuses heavily on the use of language, and the flaws of language as a means to understand and comprehend objective truths (DFW said himself that this book is essentially a dialogue between Ludwig Wittgenstein and Jacques Derrida). Hugely funny and filled with clever scenes and dialogue, this is a hallmark of surrealist literature of the last 50 years. This is the sort of world I'd like to live in! 

The Crying of Lot 49 Cover Image
ISBN: 9781606864609
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Published: Perfection Learning - January 1st, 2010

Considered one of the greatest pieces of postmodern literature, The Crying is about an investigation that the protagonist, Oedipa Maas, has found herself in the midst of. She begins to question what is real and what is false. With strange characters and stunning imagery, Pynchon established an ideology that'd consumed many of the people in America post WWII. The world is a different place now and the theory of objective meaning in the world, literature, and art has dissipated. Pynchon carries this to its logical end in this very short but timeless piece of commenatry on America. Filled with idioms, imagery, cynicism, narcissism, and fatalism, this is a must-read for serious readers of serious fiction! 

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Pastoralia Cover Image
ISBN: 9781573228725
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Published: Riverhead Books - June 1st, 2001

Pastoralia is George Saunders's second full-length short story collection that is outrageously funny and clever. Pastoralia is the telling of contemporary America and its staunch capitalistic ideology that leaves much of the country marginalized. America isn't structured to comfort all its citizens. Saunders touches on this - and how we not only have the government (or corporations) to blame, but we have ourselves as well - in not taking care of each other. Saunders is arguably considered the greatest satirist still writing in America. Step away from the television and please read this book!