Wednesday, July 8, 2009
The Blue Notebook
by James A. Levine.
Quickie Recap: Batuk is a young girl sold into prostitution by her father. Her only escape is via the nub of a pencil she managed to pilfer from her madam and whatever scraps of paper she can keep hidden in her cage. She writes of violence, savagery, and dehumanizing acts as if they were merely a way of life, and for her, they are.
Quickie Review: Haunting, devastating, heart-breaking, hopeful. I don't know how he did it, but Levine writes beautifully and manages to present to us a face and an issue inside a story that you cannot put down. I blew this one out of the water, staying up past the wise hour in order to finish it all in one sitting. It's painful, but it's good. It makes you really think about the magic of words.
Quickie Recommendation: Please, yes. Levine is donating proceeds to help exploited children, so by buying his book you not only help, you have an inspiring and inspired piece of writing.