The Fever



For me, finishing Megan Abbott's novel The Fever was like surviving a nasty roller-coaster ride without puking-- I don't like roller-coaster rides-- and there's a part of me that doesn't like Megan Abbott novels, because they are so disturbing . . . and while I acknowledge that the writing is sharp and the plot moves and the characters creep off the page, the topics of this book are malevolent and particularly disturbing: hypochondria, seizures, algae in the drinking water, HPV vaccines, panic, social media rumor-mongering, peer pressure, and inscrutable teenage girls . . . despite this, I couldn't put it down, this is the kind of book that you read over coffee and breakfast before work at 6:15 in the morning, just to get through a few more pages: nine algal blooms out of ten.

8 comments:

Whitney said...

There are a number of films that I admire, even really like . . . but probably don't have the stomach to sit through it again any time soon. The Deer Hunter comes to mind.

zman said...

Eternal Sunshine of the Spotless Mind. Brilliant movie but so relentlessly sad.

Dave said...

i watch "eternal sunshine" every year in class, and i love it every time . . .

Whitney said...

I could watch Eternal Sunshine every day. It's optimistic at the conclusion!

Dave said...

or is it? there's some indication that they've done this more than once , and they might erase each other again and again . . .

Dave said...

also, could you really watch it every day? are you erasing it and then re-watching it?

zman said...

Perhaps my life situation in 2003 tainted my view of the movie, but I thought the ending meant that they were doomed to getting together, being miserable to the point of destroying part of their brains to get away from each other, only to circle back together and repeat the cycle. Adding to the tragedy was the fact that they didn't realize that they were entrenched a doomed cycle of failure.

Dave said...

could be, but mary could have broken the cycle by mailing everyone the tapes and essentially destroying the erasing business, it's hard to tell, there's that weird beach snow time montage at the end.

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