A Book I Could Not Finish

A rainy day with a library book unsullied by any other reader; the book is a new copy – Ben Marcos’s The Flame Alphabet – and I’d be the first to read it, but I couldn’t get past the first 50 pages.

Marcos has a reputation for strange stories full of metaphors. In The Flame Alphabet the premise is that children’s voices are lethal for adults. Anyone who has survived a teenager in the house might sympathize with the parents who are assailed by their teen daughter’s disdainful comments, and the futuristic story does seem to play on the irony of parent-child relationships.  Frustrated by the parents’ escape plans and the descriptions of others who were tortured by any sounds, even pleasant ones, from children, I turned to the New York Times reviewer for some incentive to continue.

You can read Robert Lennon’s review – here – and decide for yourself.  I moved on to another book.

2 thoughts on “A Book I Could Not Finish

  1. I used to force myself to finish books that were critically acclaimed, or other people had recommended, and a couple of years ago I realized life was just too short. So liberating!

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