Small reviews

I don’t have as much to say about these two books so I’m putting them in one post. BOOM.

Is Everyone Hanging out without Me?, and Other Concerns, Mindy Kaling

This is such a good title for a book like this. Which is to say, a collection of short essays about Mindy Kaling’s life and thoughts she has thought on various topics. Mindy Kaling is a charming human person and I think she would be a fun friend. Her book is charming and fun, and slight. She says some charming things about gender performance (but she doesn’t call it gender performance) and TV and girlfriends. But they are kind of more — can I say this without appearing to hate on blogs, my love for which is well-documented? — more like blog posts than essays. They would be very good blog posts. As essays they aren’t quite together enough for me.

The Unquiet, Jeannine Garsee

I’m the worst but this is the “bipolar girl in supernatural situation” book that I read because I couldn’t get Bleeding Violet. I know! I’m a jerk! I didn’t expect it to be bad, I just expected it to be less awesome than the imagined awesomeness I ascribe to Bleeding Violet, which I have still not read (grrr). The Unquiet is about a bipolar girl who comes to live in a small town with a haunted school. The haunting is scary; the bipolar girl doesn’t want everyone to think she’s crazy; eventually enough horrible haunty stuff happens that she decides to do something about it. And there’s a boy who doesn’t mind her being bipolar. Hooray.

And it was fine. I expect more from Bleeding Violet, but this was fine. There’s some stuff about being mentally ill, and some stuff about fitting in with the high school crowd. The supernatural system wasn’t very well-defined, and the ghost’s motivations were all a bit weird. Rinn’s relationship with her stepfather is kind of heartbreaking, but most of the other emotional stuff failed to land.

In other unsurprising news, I should review books right after I finish reading them. I usually have stuff to say right after, but then it falls out of my head at an alarming rate. Sorry, Mindy Kaling. Sorry, The Unquiet.

Oh gosh, even with combining these two into one post, I didn’t have much to say about them. Let’s take this opportunity, then, for everyone to tell me what you thought of the ending of Looper. Everyone’s seen it by now, right? If not don’t take to the comments, because that’s where I will be expressing my severe disappointment with the ending. I was severely disappointed with the ending. I liked the movie all the way through — the scene with Seth Dano’s future self running away is one of the coolest, creepiest things ever — but then they let me down with the ending. I haven’t seen Brick, but I do remember being unimpressed with the ending of The Brothers Bloom; is it possible that Rian Johnson just isn’t a closer? Good at the set-up, not so good at the payoff?

6 thoughts on “Small reviews

  1. I know what you mean about blog posts rather than essays, you can mix both and it be successful, but it takes work and in view of your opinion about the book the lines are blurred nowadays, I’d say, because we’re so used to writing more casually and with a different structure. The title sounds more blog-like too.

  2. I haven’t heard many good things about Mindy Kaling’s book. Most of what I have heard is that she is kind of whiny and feels that she is tragically fat when she is only a size 6 or 10 or something. Yeah. Not quite my cup of tea, I think. I was also disappointed with Looper’s ending. I wanted something more. The rest of the movie was wonderful though.

  3. I felt the same way about Mindy Kaling’s book. it was cute but it wasn’t great. Bossypants was a much better book of the same genre. Since it came out right after Bossypants was so successful, a lot of people, myself included, hoped for more of the same but it just wasn’t as good.

  4. I’ve been looking forward to The Unquiet–partly because I loved Garsee’s other book Say The Word and partly because I like that The Unquiet features someone with bipolar disorder without making having the disorder the whole plot. My expectations have been lowered!

  5. I really enjoyed Looper. Possibly best 2012 movie for me so far. I thought the ending was fine but not my favorite part of the movie. On the one hand, Joe’s decision at the end gave me good chills. On the other hand, I thought the special effect of Bruce Willis and Emily Blunt hanging in the air was a litle bit silly, but the payoff was the look on the child actor’s face when he stops himself. That was a fantastic child actor.

    Word to the creepiness of the scenes with older Seth. Also, that freeze-time scene with the kid and Garret Dillahunt’s character in the house was strangely beautiful in its gory way.

    The ending to The Brothers Bloom was meh – I agree about that. (The character of Bang Bang was the best though.)

    I don’t remember the very end of Brick, but I do remember the climactic action scene as being very chilling. I want to rewatch it now that I’ve seen Rian Johnson’s two other films.

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