Thursday, December 25, 2014

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NY1 teams with contributors from The New York Times, Wall Street Journal, New York Magazine, and Essence Magazine to review the latest books and book-related trends.

The Book Reader: "Schroder," "The End Of Men"

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Zoe Triska of The Huffington Post reports for NY1 on newly released book titles and the world of publishing in "The Book Reader."

I just finished "Schroder" by Amity Gaige, and it was absolutely fantastic. Though the book is Gaige's third novel, it is being called her breakthrough book, and is getting a ton of positive buzz. It's about a man named Eric Schroder who kidnaps his daughter after a messy divorce. There have been many comparisons to the Nabokov classic "Lolita." They're both about father/daughter relationships. Both books involve unreliable narrators, they both end with the confessor locked up somewhere for his crimes. However, Eric Schroder is a much more sympathetic character than Lolita's Humbert Humbert. He is not a child molester; he is simply an extremely immature man. As reviewer Kathryn Schulz says on, "Humbert Humbert is a Bad Man Who Did things, but Schroder is just a man who did bad things."

The book is available from Twelve Publishers in both print and digital format.

Speaking of men who can't grow up, I also just read Hanna Rosin's "The End of Men." Rosin essentially makes the point that though life is not exactly equal yet for women and men, it is definitely getting there. The book is divided into different categories. For example, there is a portion on hookup culture, a portion on marriage, and also a portion on careers. The book seems like a very shallow overview of what is going on between men and women. She seems to barely graze the surface of one topic before rushing to the next.

I actually finished the book feeling pretty offended. Every time she mentioned women who choose to stay at home and be housewives and mothers instead of going to work, she did so in an insulting way. I got the impression that Rosin thinks that in order for women to lead fulfilling lives, they need to be full-time career women. It's a bit ironic that Rosin seems to be telling us what the only possible fulfilling lifestyle is for all women; isn't that what men used to do?

The book is available from Riverhead in both print and digital format.

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