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[[ Download Kindle ]] ⚞ Duluth ⚶ Perhaps Vidal s most outrageous novel, this is an indescribable fantasy purportedly set in the city of Duluth which, however, is near the Mexican border involving a tv show also named Duluth a parody of Dallas , a spaceship that has landed nearby, the antics of a policewoman, Darlene Ecks, much else A wild spoof of absolutely everything social pretenses, law enforcement, marriage, open marriage, racism, literature, tv, science fiction, and sex Dozens of plots perk along at an amazing paceraunchy, dirty, outrageous, rife with cliches often very funny People One of the most brilliant, most radical, most subversive pieces of writing to emerge from America in recent years The New Statesman Vidal belongs to that group of writers of our time who, precisely because they have always kept their eyes open to the disorders distortions of our age, have chosen irony, humor, comedy in other words, the whole range of literary instruments belonging to the universe of the laugh as their means of settling accounts Italo Calvino I won t even delve into how absurdly offensive nearly every page of this novel is, as I m sure it was entirely intentional I gather this was supposed to be fraught with highly amusing, scathing commentary on the excesses of the 1980 s, but either I was too young back then to fully get in on the joke, or it s so obtuse that only the author knows it s there I hate this particular genre of postmodern fiction the perverse, incoherent driveling of dirty old men and I probably wouldn t have starte I won t even delve into how absurdly offensive nearly every page of this novel is, as I m sure it was entirely intentional I gather this was supposed to be fraught with highly amusing, scathing commentary on the excesses of the 1980 s, but either I was too young back then to fully get in on the joke, or it s so obtuse that only the author knows it s there I hate this particular genre of postmodern fiction the perverse, incoherent driveling of dirty old men and I probably wouldn t have started this had I known that s what it was going to be At least Vidal is a better writer than, say, a Nicholson Baker, so there was a layer of candy coating over this crap Maybe this shocked and scandalized the literary aesthetes of 30 years ago, but today it merely resembles bathroom wall scrawl Pop culture needs its own hallowers and it has found one in Gore Vidal Duluth is a unhinged lampoon of all the tasteless clich s of pop culture brewing in the seething caldron of venomous mockery When I look about Duluth and see what they have created massage parlors, adult book stores, a symphony orchestra I am revolted, Pablo, revolted by a culture that has no strong basis in faith Oh, not just religious faith Duluth is an unrestrained ramble about the garden of earthly vulgarity Alie Pop culture needs its own hallowers and it has found one in Gore Vidal Duluth is a unhinged lampoon of all the tasteless clich s of pop culture brewing in the seething caldron of venomous mockery When I look about Duluth and see what they have created massage parlors, adult book stores, a symphony orchestra I am revolted, Pablo, revolted by a culture that has no strong basis in faith Oh, not just religious faith Duluth is an unrestrained ramble about the garden of earthly vulgarity Alien spaceships, tasteless shows, absurd escapades, fake historical fiction, romantic figments everything is turned into the burlesque mincemeat Will Beryl follow her beloved to Moscow in the cold winter with the wolves howling as her samovar hurtles across the frozen wastes of uh, inner Europe Truth to tell, I don t know, says Rosemary in a hoarse conspiratorial whisper But I do know that when, finally, Napoleon and she are together again in one another s arms, this will be a Napoleon never before revealed in a true fiction Picture a tall muscular man, with flashing gray blue eyes beneath black brows Only inveterate aesthetes read thick esoteric and incomprehensible books but all the normal people enjoy fizzy belles lettres Another of Gore s raucous entertainments This anarchic semi satirical, semi surreal novel flirts with the metafictional two decades after its heyday and flings about a dozen different plots at the reader that all intersect in sometimes random and sometimes logical ways I gave up looking for the clever connective tissue between the elements fifty pages in, possibly because there isn t any Summarising the novel would also be a waste of my time, since the storylines all take various absurdist Another of Gore s raucous entertainments This anarchic semi satirical, semi surreal novel flirts with the metafictional two decades after its heyday and flings about a dozen different plots at the reader that all intersect in sometimes random and sometimes logical ways I gave up looking for the clever connective tissue between the elements fifty pages in, possibly because there isn t any Summarising the novel would also be a waste of my time, since the storylines all take various absurdist detours into fictional reality, political satire, edgy rape humour something uncommon these days wonder why , and an exhausting display of imaginative barbs that relent only when the book staggers to its bug apocalypse climax This is the sort of book most authors would write if they had the status to publish anything like Mr Vidal a completely berserk detour of the imagination unfiltered by such trivialities as audiences, readers, or marketing strategies Completely loco and hilarious First 10 pages wow So inventive and avant garde Next 30 pages hm, this isn t really all that funny and is kind of just as trashy as the stuff it s supposed to be spoofing.Rest of book WTF, Gore Vidal We re supposed to think it s funny that a female cop systematically rapes immigrant Mexicans and ultra stereotyped black men chanting give me your okra and prunes And then the immigrants gang rape her as a revenge, but she doesn t really mind because she s a good sport until they try t First 10 pages wow So inventive and avant garde Next 30 pages hm, this isn t really all that funny and is kind of just as trashy as the stuff it s supposed to be spoofing.Rest of book WTF, Gore Vidal We re supposed to think it s funny that a female cop systematically rapes immigrant Mexicans and ultra stereotyped black men chanting give me your okra and prunes And then the immigrants gang rape her as a revenge, but she doesn t really mind because she s a good sport until they try to rip her up with a knife Then she screams, and the male cop comes and rescues her but he s so turned on he makes her play dominatrix and handcuff him and almost have sex with him just seconds after the Mexican rapist attacker gang have escaped and she s, you know, bloodied and traumatised but she just flips her hair and plays along Ha ha, right And meanwhile, sadly, the other story lines are just boring Overall, nothing is funny or outrageous except all of the funny, funny raping because the world this book takes place in has no rules so there are no transgressions Anything can happen for no real good reason The police chief moves a push pin and a nonsensical law of physics is invented invoked to explain why this in turn causes the space ship it represents to move And the framing conceit about characters moving between novels and media which could have been really cool is too sloppily applied to have any meaning It s like a high school free writing exercise, or a drug fueled rant about 1970s culture that somehow morphs into Gore Vidal getting his rocks off to sick racist sexist fantasies because he can in a supposed satire He s supposed to spoofing trash, but mainly he s just glorifying and enhancing it in a really haphazard, non sequiter way I really hated it A lot And had to stop after about 100 pages because it was literally making me ill Which is too bad becuase the synopsis was so intriguing SIGH