Just now, I posted a review of Alice Sebold’s The Lovely Bones on Goodreads. I am posting only the opening two paragraphs here, because the rest of the review contains spoilers. If you would like to read the entire review, please look me up on Goodreads or look up reviews of The Lovely Bones and search for mine among the hundreds already there.
I listened to the audio version read by the author, Alice Sebold. This version is about 10.5 hours in length and I listened to it on a trip from Midland, TX, to Gillett, AR, that lasted about 10.4 hours (counting only actual driving time). When I arrived home, I brought my baggage, groceries, and the dog in and dropped everything else until I had finished it.
This book is very well written. It is poignant, thoughtful, easy to comprehend, and reader-friendly. The title does not refer to what you probably think it does. That’s not revealed to the last chapter or two. It really makes one think about one’s relationships with one’s family and how one fits into the overall picture of life and death. I definitely recommend reading this book. It might change how you look at things.
I have been contemplating my play “Centaurs” and trying to work out what I need to change. It just isn’t exciting enough. It doesn’t involve the audience enough. I know there’s something missing, but I can’t pinpoint it. Therefore, tonight I have been surfing YouTube for performances of great plays and surfing the Internet for what are considered the great play of American theatre. Perhaps not surprisingly, there is a generally accepted canon of the greatest American plays: “The Iceman Cometh”, “Long Day’s Journey into Night”, “Death of a Salesman”, “Who’s Afraid of Virginia Woolf”, etc., with “Angels in America” probably being the most contemporary on most lists. Although all are terrific works, none seem to have something innovative enough to interest me. Therefore, I have started looking into contemporary theatre. This is turning out to be quite interesting. Contemporary theatre, based on the few videos I have seen tonight (and on past experience too, of course), seems to have the minimalist, dreamy, postmodernist, almost mystical qualities that intrigue me. I will continue my research for probably a few days to come, but I am already coming up with ideas about interaction with the audience and monologues. Combining those with my own past experience in public speaking and acting (I was once in two short Tennessee Williams plays), I feel I may be on to something.