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eatmebookiebloggie! – Motherless Brooklyn by Jonathan Lethem

I think I have this.

Who is Lionel (line-all) Essrog? Here’s his life story, up to some point:

My life story to this point:

The teacher looked at me like I was crazy.

The social services worker looked at me like I was crazy.

The boy looked at me like I was crazy and then hit me.

The girl looked at me like I was crazy.

The woman looked at me like I was crazy.

The black homicide detective looked at me like I was crazy.

Why did six people look at him like he was crazy? Well, he is sort of crazy, if one considers a neuropsychiatric disorder as a characteristic of a crazy person. Tourette’s syndrome, yes, that’s it. To prevent you from steering towards Wikipedia, let me just briefly describe what Tourette’s is: it is a disorder wherein a person suffers from involuntary verbal or motor, or both, tics.

So let’s say a person, in this case Lionel Essrog, our protagonist, talks to you, he will not be able to control himself from tapping your shoulder. In fact, he might tap your shoulder up to six times. And while he’s talking, he might just intermittently blurt -eatmebailey!- sounds or phrases that do not make -roundsofaces!- sense to the listener. Heck, he might even be mentally counting the hairs sticking out of your nose.

It’s fun reading through his tics because they are very witty play of words. So one may see Lionel as a wordsmith instead of a chronic sufferer. Speaking of suffering, his father figure, Frank Minna, also the founder of the detective agency where he works, was fatally stabbed. As a result of blood loss, he dies at a Brooklyn hospital.

So yes, Lionel plays the detective with invasive tics here. Finding out who the killer is seems to be the ultimate question, but really, I think there is more to it than that despite this novel being a detective story.

Date Started: May 23, 2012. 9:15 PM. Book #31 of 2012.

* * * * *

Anyway, since I could somehow relate to the protagonist’s compulsions (yes, I do have a set of them), I’d like to make a sort of announcement, which is a sort of compulsion, if you really think about it. This has been eating me up for days. I think I should put this on a separate post, but anyway, starting next month, I will start writing my book write-ups immediately or as soon as possible. I will no longer uphold the six-month waiting period, because really, I now have a huge backlog of book write-ups and I have some trouble remembering them.

A question: why did I even choose not to do my book write-ups immediately? Answer: because almost everyone is doing that. Procrastinating reviews is the blog niche that I initially chose, but now, that is taking its toll on me. But this is the whole point of the act: to test which books will last longer inside my head and which books will leave a bigger imprint on me. Well, I can always re-rant on those books, can’t I?

Besides, there are some people who are anticipating the write-ups for the books that I recently finished. So I think this is good news for them, no? Another thing: I will just compile my initial reading reactions into one weekly wrap-up post. This way, I can prevent people from confusing my initial reactions from my official write-ups. I know I sound crazy. Perhaps I have Tourette’s?


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