Tuesday, November 24, 2009

The Wild Things by Dave Eggers

I don't have much to say about the content of this novel (an expanded version of the film version of the picture book, requested apparently and sanctioned by Maurice Sendak) other than I found it to have the same pros and cons as the film, which I liked but didn't love.

But what I really want to talk about is the fur! As many of you probably know, the novel came in two editions--regular and fur-covered. And I (of course!) bought the fur-covered one. I intended to give it to a family member as a gift but I decided she'd be too freaked out by it, and so naturally I kept it all for myself. And I am totally freaked out by it! And fascinated by it! The fur is presumably fake, but very convincing--I have a very wolf-like dog and this is very wolf-like fur, nearly indistinguishable from the dog's when I vacuum. But the fur (which covers the whole exterior of the book minus the two eyes peeking out) gets ruffled periodically and naturally I have to smooth it out (much like in a petting motion). And I am here to tell you petting a book makes you love it more! This is the answer to digital mucketymucking in the world of books. Publishers must make us love our books more! They should be like those electronic gadgets you have to feed and babytalk so they don't die. Put a chip in our books--if we don't read them or stroke them or speak them aloud--they die!

Okay, perhaps I go too far, but I've long thought that the publishing world is going to go increasingly high and low--e-books being low and fur-covered books (or the aforementioned bite-marked Firmin by Sam Savage) being high. The physical book (as opposed to the digital book) as art object and not just reading experience is a path I wouldn't mind following. Except in my opinion the low (e-book etc) should be priced way way lower than it is now. And I say that as someone who hopes to make royalties one day.

1 comment:

Susan Allspaw Pomeroy said...

I love the image of you petting a book.