Cut You Up In Little Pieces

images.jpgYou are probably aware that the murder capitol of the world is Cabot Cove. Ever since The Manchurian Candidate I have cast a jaundiced eye at Angela Landsbury and the pokey gendarmes of Maine. But that was just fun entertainment (meaning there wasn’t a lot of blood and gore) and Cabot Cove has easily been replaced by the unnamed town in Japan frequented by Goth chicks and body parts stapled to a tree.

While seeking to throw some variety into my reading, I came across a recent volume titled Goth: A Novel of Horror by Otsuichi. I’ve got a soft spot in my scary parts for Japanese horror and this one seemed ideal for a midnight snack. It all takes place in a small corner of Japan where severed hands are buried in the backyard like kimchi and an occasional ear or nipple stapled to the side of a telephone pole is not an unusual sight. But after a half-dozen of these bloody dismemberments and three or four instances of being buried alive on the side of the potting shed, one does wonder why there are no traditional murders in this town: shootings, knifings, nunchuckings, poisonings.

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Genremandering

BookI often hear the argument about Historical Fiction only to realize that it is often confused with a particularly embarrassing form of writing is called Historical Romance: Bodice Rippers for the most part. So to start with a reasonable definition: Historical Romance is Genre Fiction whereas Historical Fiction is Literary Fiction. Got that? But what is the difference between Genre Fiction and Literary Fiction? We need an impartial Martian to come to earth and help us understand this differentiation … the literary commentators and critics are all over the place with their firm pronouncements.

(By the way: never trust what a commentator, critic, or pundit says … think for yourself!).

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