Working in the book industry brings along with it some perks such as, once in a while, free books.
Not all the time do these books prove to be worthwhile reads. I might gripe about them collectively, but they barely seem to be worth writing bad reviews for. I think I have enough faith in my fellow readers for those books to eventually regress from radar enough so as not to pester us again.
But for ones I do enjoy reading… I think they are certainly worth talking about; recommending to people I know, at least. And just such a great read have I recently closed and passed along to a friend.
It’s called Mammals by Pierre Mérot.
Although the author fairly obviously draws upon himself at least for the basic details of the protagonist, this is not a shallow recounting of a person’s boring life. This is a novel that, page after page, delivers witty and bitter comments about life – as an alocholic, in our time, living along with too many other people on the planet. While some of it may seem like overbearing self-pity, for the most part it simply opens up the reader to make connections with the mostly anonymous main character, regardless of sex and gender. As a youthful female, I had very little in common with the aging male protagonist and yet this novel touched me on a very personal level. The writing had a certain momentum that kept me drinking up the words until I was finished reading in less than a week.
This is the kind of novel that, through its honest, sometimes grimy, depictions of this man’s life, can teach you lessons. Read it.