“Generation X: Tales for an Accelerated Culture” by Douglas Coupland

Number 47 on my list of 101 things to do in 1001 days was to read at least one of the Canada Reads books for 2010. I included this because every year I lament about how I should have read at least a couple of the books, but that never happens.

If I was an avid reader, I would challenge myself to read all of them every year, but I’m a slow and picky reader. And, I already have a huge list of books that I want to read and a pile of books on my shelf waiting for me to read. I know myself well enough to know that I can manage one book from the list, and will (after making the initial attempt to find them) probably end up reading two or three of them.

This year I started with Douglas Coupland’s “Generation X: Tales for an Accelerated Culture” because it was the first of my three choices to be available at the library. I have two others on hold (Nicolas Dickner’s “Nikolski” and Ann-Marie MacDonald’s  “Fall on Your Knees“). And, I’m still considering the last two (Marina Endicott’s “Good to a Fault” and Wayson Choy’s “The Jade Peony“), but, knowing me, if I don’t get them read in the next few weeks, they will never get read.

Coupland’s “Generation X” isn’t the sort of book that I would normally read, but it was amusing (not laugh out loud funny, but amusing enough to keep the pages turning) and it was interesting. It revolves around three friends who live in the Mojave Desert (California). Half of it is the story of their lives and the other half is them telling “bedtime” stories to each other. These little stories are mostly told under the guise of just being made up stories, but they are all connected to the story teller.

It’s intriguing because it is quirky. And, it’s possibly a little depressing because they (the characters) seem so completely, totally and utterly lost in this world. Which, I gather, is sort of the point. They are lost.

It was a fairly quick and easy read, so if it’s one of those books that you keep considering reading, I say go for it. Grab it the next time you see it and spend the weekend curled up with it.


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