Wednesday, December 7, 2011
The Weekly Damage 12/07/2011
1. I think you all remember Jonathan Santlofer’s wonderfully weird story, The 74th Tale that he wrote for The Mysterious Bookshop’s Christmas Story Series in 2008, in which a man buries his neighbor alive because of his deformed finger? Well if you don’t— shame on you— there is a certain British husband and father who does. According to Gawker: a Polish immigrant living in England, “tased (his wife), then bound and gagged her with packing tape, and "imprisoned her in a box," prosecutor Jonathan Sharp told the court. It was a computer box, into which two air holes had been cut. The two men then loaded the box in the trunk of their car, drove it to a wooded area, and buried it in a shallow grave. They placed a tree, weighing approximately 85 pounds, on top of the grave, then drove to a supermarket ATM and withdrew money from Lewandowska's bank account.” Okay, so maybe Santlofer’s story didn’t directly influence this nutter, but still. Read the rest of the article here. (via Gawker).
2. Amanda Knox is trading in her handcuffs for a pen, and an estimated seven-figures with the release of her memoir. Just in case you need a little reminder, Amanda Knox is the American exchange student who served 4 years in an Italian prison for murdering her roommate and was recently acquitted, or something… In signing with lit agent Robert Barnett, Foxi Knoxi will join the ranks of Prez. Obama, Bill Clinton, Sarah Palin and Dick Cheney, who are also represented by Barnett. Here’s to hoping for the veil of fallacy to be lifted from the shining face of truth, and that we learn how to say “Don’t drop the soap” in Italian. Also, what do you think they eat in Italian prison… g-KNOX-e? (Sorry…)
3. With the upcoming film “Tinker Taylor Soldier Spy” in mind, The New Yorker has revisited John le Carre’s 1974 novel that inspired the movie. “We love to lurk in their midst, to learn their codes, and to be initiated into the circle of their charm; hence the delicious slang that salts the Smiley books, and that every reader quickly comes to relish—all the moles, lamplighters, scalp hunters, babysitters, reptile funds, mothers, Cousins, inquisitors, and joes. At the same time, the secrets that lie beyond our field of vision are a wellspring of great disquiet; they tell at best of unknowable national security, at worst of unreachable loneliness, or of a kingdom that has been hollowed out, like a marriage, without our even noticing. Hence the inventory, in “Tinker Tailor Soldier Spy,” of all the minutiae that have never ceased to encircle Smiley, and to menace his peace of mind” Beautifully put, Read the full article here.
4. A couple of weeks ago, Megan Abbot spoke about her new novel, The End of Everything at The Mysterious Bookshop with Duane Swierczynski and, well, QR Markham. Anyways, besides being the cutest-thing-I-ever-did-see, Abbot was fascinating in her discussion of the nature of memory and the existential anxiety of childhood. She elaborates on these thoughts on her blog, as well as citing some juicy insights into stranger dancer. Read it here.
5. December is my favorite time of the year for many reasons: all the best and most depressing movies hit the theaters (ahem… Shame), my favorite bar lights their fireplace in back, and all the literary go-to sources pack the yearly slew of crime fiction into bite size favorites lists. The New York Times has posted a list of notable crime books of 2011, and lo and behold, the staff at TMBS have already been singing the glories of these titles all year. What can we say? It’s a gift. Check it out.
Have a good week everyone.