8 of 9 people found the following review helpful
A storyless story? or fictionless fiction?,
This review is from: Our Tragic Universe (Hardcover)On the cover of this book the question is asked 'could a story save your life?'...
This book is about a regular British girl leading a fairly regular life. The magic of the book lies within Thomas' amazing ability to meld theory and fiction. Throughout this book Scarlett Thomas magically weaves together theory and fiction in a way that challenges the mind to think of bigger questions. Scarlett Thomas poses questions and possible answers to life's biggest questions, within the context of a very ordinary life.
Throughout the book implicit parallels are drawn between the theory presented and the actual plot of the book - in so doing has Scarlett Thomas achieved...
...a 'storyless story'? - "It is not something from which the reader should strive to learn something, but rather a puzzle or a paradox with no 'answer' or 'solution'..."
...a fictionless fiction? - "something super-authentic and with so much real emotional truth that none of it seems like a story at all"
...a character who "didn't worry about what they wore or said or did", a fool "stepping over the edge of the cliff on all our behalves, so that we can also step out of the restrictive frame of contemporary Western narrative", thus combatting the hero-myths that she refers to.
This book is a beautiful summary of a snippet of Meg's life - there isn't high drama, our main character isn't the perfect heroine that we strive to be like in our lives, but never achieve. For me the book is an account of everyday life, the normalness of living - the slight lows and slight highs. That is what makes this book unique...
For me this book is the Labyrinth that Thomas describes at the end: "There is no drama in the centre of the Labyrinth, just a place where you have come to rest for a while before you walk the path out again."
So could a story save your life? This one didn't save my life, but it has certainly changed it...