Bite-Sized Book Review: The Girl on the FridgeBooks & Movies & TV, Dec 26, 2011
Even though these book reviews are very short, I'm sure there are still some people who, though they're interested, don't go out and buy or borrow the book because they just don't have the time. And that's a very valid concern. Novels tend to take a long time to read when there's work, school, and the million and one other things we have to do to keep us busy. So, here's your fix: Etgar Keret's collection of short stories, The Girl on the Fridge.
1. Obviously, this solves the who-has-time-to-read-a-whole-book-these-days problem. You can pick it up, read a story quickly, finish it, go about your business, and pick it up again without having to go back a few pages to remember what you read a week ago.
2. Keret is a phenomenal writer. Dubbed the "voice of the next generation" by the great Salman Rushdie himself, the Israeli writer is world-famous for his short stories. He's regularly featured on NPR's This American Life, and his film-writing credits include 2007's Jellyfish and my personal favourite Wristcutters: A Love Story.
3. The stories in The Girl on the Fridge are dark, twisted, funny, and very, very beautiful. Each one stands alone as a mini masterpiece while complementing the collection as a whole. The characters come to life within the first few words, and though their stories only last a few pages, it's enough to hook you and draw you in.
4. With inspiration such as Faulkner, Vonnegut's Slaughter House Five, and Kafka's Metamorphosis, it's no wonder that Keret's world is populated by the weird and the creepy. But whether it's a birthday party magician whose act turns gory, or a girl raised by a large kitchen appliance, there's something sweet and charming about every single one of Keret's creations, no matter how dark and flawed they might be.
5. Wouldn't this book make the perfect belated Christmas present for that friend who has the best taste but already owns everything? (Be honest, that's probably why you're still reading). Well, you're absolutely right! What better way to tell the bookworm in your life that you care, than to show that you didn't just pick something out of Oprah's book club?