Judith Lautner (judith) wrote,
Judith Lautner


One of the books-on-CD that I brought with me from LV is something called My Life as a Fake, by Peter Carey. I had never heard of Carey before. Mary found the book and I liked the title and that was all I knew of it.

And now I am so completely engrossed in it that I hear the reader's English accent, and all of the emotion she imparts through her voice, at all times of day, and I find myself looking forward to taking the car here or there just so that I can listen. Yes, I could bring it inside and listen through my CD player in my laptop as I wander through my emails and manipulate photographs, but so far I don't want to do that. Yet I go to bed thinking of the story the way I would if I were reading bits of it before sleep. Perhaps I should put a CD player in my bedroom and listen to it there. As it is, it has changed the way I go to work, the way I buy groceries, the way I learn about what's going on in the world. Normally I listen to AirAmerica Radio or NPR and thereby learn a thing or two about what political and environmental events are taking place.

I may be enjoying the writing better this way as well. I feel the words and phrases on my tongue, taste them with delight, perhaps more so because I am hearing them through this somewhat foreign accent.

Who would have thought? I didn't have this reaction from the suspense novel that kept me going through my otherwise-horrifying trip on Sunday. There were, of course, no beautifully-written phrases in there, no unusual characters, no surprising story. And no English accent. Instead, a very American man's voice. I remember one of the phrases: more than once that writer referred to persons as having an "unaccented California voice". I thought it funny and annoying that he would say that California accents are "unaccented".

So, after finishing a run-of-the-mill suspense novel, what I call airplane reading, I was surprised at the very first words in My Life as a Fake. I knew I was onto something truly good here. I looked up the book on Amazon and found that it rates four of five stars by most reviewers. This because, I believe, the story wanders through many different lives, which made some readers think of it as several short stories put together. I am not so sure of this interpretation. I am almost halfway through and do not find the stories that separate from each other. It is the interweaving of these many stories that is so fascinating.

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