Sex, Drugs, Rock & Roll: A Mother’s Day Book Review by Lo.

9 05 2010

Nope. They're still opposite of cute.

Hey guys! I read sometimes! And in the past 2 months, I read *2* books! This is a BIG deal! I can’t stop using exclamation points! [calms self] PHEW. Okay, that’s better. So, the 2 books I read were completely different in style and genre, but had a common thread of the Rolling Stones. Which kind of surprised me in the second book (not so much in the first, as there is a photo of the band on the cover. I’m astute.) The first book is called Sway: A Novel by Zachary Lazar. It’s…weird. In an awesome way. It’s historical fiction, which you know I looooooooove (hello Marie Antoinette!!), and threads together the Stones, avant garde filmmaker Kenneth Anger, and the Manson family. While I’m sure the amount of sex, drugs, and rock & roll are fairly accurate, other facts are made up. Lazar writes the novel in a way that makes you feel like you’re kind of on drugs, regardless of whether or not you are (full disclosure: I was not). I’m not going to give away any plot points, mainly because I spent the majority of the book kind of confused about what the hell was going on. But this is not a criticism: it really adds to the chaos and the ever-present theme of death (and, uh, drugs.) Also, even though she was a big ol’ heroin addict and willingly had sex with Keith Richards, I kind of want to be Anita Pallenberg. So, I totally recommend it, but keep in mind that, you know, drugs.

The second book I read was Hypocrite in a Pouffy White Dress by Susan Gilman. I fucking loved this book. It’s a memoir, which is a genre I may love more than historical fiction. I am very nosy, and biographies and memoirs let me be nosy under the guise of wanting to learn new things. Make no mistake: I really can’t mind my own business. ANYWAY. This book had me nearly pissing myself from laughing. Susan Gilman takes us through her childhood, adolescence, and adulthood weaving tales of her batshit nuts parents, her propensity towards lying for sport, a journalism assignment to concentration camps, and her adolescent infatuation with the Rolling Stones (including a minor stalking incident and a completely true story wherein her 15 year self actually meets Mick Jagger thanks to a friend’s well-connected parents). Her take on life is not dissimilar to my own, especially in her description of her teenage years. Gilman is hilarious, her parents are hilarious, and the situations in which she finds herself are, yes, fucking hilarious. It was a great way to follow up the heaviness of Sway, and is also a great way to relive the childhood you wish you’d had. Oh, and to revive your obsession with the Stones. AMIRITE??

Happy Mother’s Day!

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