Rhymes with Useless: Stories

by Terence Young | Literature & Fiction |
ISBN: 1551923548 Global Overview for this book
Registered by Pooker3 of Winnipeg, Manitoba Canada on 7/19/2009
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2 journalers for this copy...
Journal Entry 1 by Pooker3 from Winnipeg, Manitoba Canada on Sunday, July 19, 2009
Sticker price $2.00. So with my 10% discount less than that - for a brand new book. Boggles my mind.

But, I read *After Goodlake's* by this author last year (which I also bought at a ridiculously low price, if I remember right) and quite enjoyed it. So, I'll read this one for John Mutford's The Canadian Book Challenge 3 and give it a bit of exposure. Reading now.

Journal Entry 2 by Pooker3 from Winnipeg, Manitoba Canada on Saturday, August 01, 2009
Sigh. Clearly I am a greedy greedy pig. I gobbled these stories down in a matter of a couple of days.

I loved these stories. I wonder why Terence Young is not better known. Of course, it's possible he is and it's just me who's been in the dark, but I thought that all of these stories just sparkled.

The book has 197 pages. There are 13 stories. That means, on average, the author has 15 pages in which to make you know his characters and care about what happens to them. My favourite female short story writers (Margaret Laurence, Alice Munro and a few others) are able to do that to me. I've always assumed that the reason for that has been that their characters are not unlike me -ordinary women in situations that I have experienced or can easily imagine. Ties already exist and only need some plucking. To be honest, I wouldn't have expected a man to be able to do that as easily. And, I would say that Young's characters are not like me. I mean really, I'd never suggest that Joni Mitchell of all people cut my hair like Eustace does in the title story (I might claim she gave me a tampon while waiting in line for the only women's john at the Winnipeg Football stadium maybe, but not cut my hair!) While his characters seem ordinary enough, they are just a little bit off the ordinary. They each have a certain vulnerability that they guard - a wound somewhere that the reader knows is going to get touched.

While there was not one story that I did not like, perhaps my favourite was "Pig on a Stick". David, who is 13, lives in Paris with his mother. His parents are divorced and his mother is about to marry a man that David detests. David, who hasn't seen his real father in ages, decides he wants to go visit. Dad Peter, is a poet (David has never read his poetry). Peter makes his own wine. He makes candles for a living. He lives in small town where the big event is a B.Y.O.B. potluck pig roast - where the pig, skewered anus to snout, roasts on a barbecue fashioned from washing machine, boat, and bicycle parts. About as far from Paris as you can get. Peter wonders what his son will make of it all and what he remembers. And indeed David is "astonished" that this man is his father.

Yet, as David's mother decides, "Children are our only hope of a love that doesn't recall anything but itself" and at the close of the story, at the end of the pig roast evening, amidst the taunts of of their ball game opponents:

"David moves toward his father. They stand close together now, as though seeking protection from rain or wind. David hands him a green ball and, as Peter lofts a shot into wavering obscurity, David follows it with his eyes. 'Good one,' he says. 'Good one.'"

This book is a good one.

4th book read for The 3rd Canadian Book Challenge.
To be released when the time is right.

Journal Entry 3 by Pooker3 at Park Theatre & Movie Cafe in Winnipeg, Manitoba Canada on Tuesday, November 10, 2009

Released 9 yrs ago (11/10/2009 UTC) at Park Theatre & Movie Cafe in Winnipeg, Manitoba Canada

WILD RELEASE NOTES:

WILD RELEASE NOTES:

On the shelf in the loft!

To the finder of this book:

Welcome to the wonderful and wacky world of BookCrossing! Here you'll find a unique and worldwide community of book lovers sharing their books. This book is now yours! Read it, enjoy it. Keep it or pass it on to someone you know or even release it back into the wild as I did. If you make a journal entry (either anonymously or as a BookCrossing member) all previous readers of this book will be notified by e-mail and can follow this book on its travels. BookCrossing is free to join, completely confidential (you are known only by your screen name and no one is ever given your email address) and whole lot of fun!

I hope you enjoy this book and the BookCrossing experience.

Journal Entry 4 by wingwinnipegobczwing from Winnipeg, Manitoba Canada on Wednesday, November 11, 2009
This book is currently sitting on the Winnipeg Official Bookcrossing Zone bookshelf in the loft of The Park Theatre & Movie Café, 698 Osborne Street, Winnipeg MB.

It is waiting there for a new reader to take home, read, and release back into the wild!


Winnipeg bookcrossers meet at my location on the second Tuesday of every month at 7pm to chat about books, swap great reads, and release on the OBCZ shelves. Please join us! We love to see new faces! You will enjoy the comfy atmosphere, the fabulous coffees and teas, and the yummy treats!

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