Friday, September 30, 2011

Fragile Things Group Read, Week 3 Ketchup

Week 3 group read of Fragile Things by Neil Gaiman and I’m all caught up. And as always, the ever mindful SPOILER ALERT so here we go! For the third week, the assigned stories were:

Going Wodwo

Bitter Grounds

Other People

Keepsakes and Treasures

Going Wodwo: A poem. I had to look up wodwo. It’s a wild man of the forest. The poem made a lot more sense reading it a second time. I really like this line at the beginning...

“Shedding my shirt, my book, my coat, my life
Leaving them, empty husks and fallen leaves”

Once again, Neil has a gift with words. And while I admire someone with the courage to run free, I don’t think I could live without hot running water.

Bitter Grounds: I didn’t understand the zombie coffee girls and I don't want them bringing me any coffee if it means that's it for me. So the main character said in the beginning that "In every way that counted, I was dead." Then a few lines down there was this "If I could have physically passed away, just let it all go, like that, without doing anything, stepped out of life as easily as walking through a door, I would have done." From this I got he was basically done with life. Something happened to this man and he was ready to check out. So he did. He left. Kept driving and even assumed the identity of someone else. Maybe this was his last road trip before passing on? Or maybe he was the walking dead the whole time? I haven't really decided. It reminded me of American Gods, where the main character's dead wife kept stalking him.

Other People: An interesting story of what hell and eternal torment could be like. Something to look forward to maybe; the chance to torment others once you’ve had your turn, but the path to get there? Not for me.

Keepsakes and Treasures: This too felt like it could have been part of American Gods. Myths and legends I don’t know about (or perhaps they were just made up?) and sordid people. Smith I did not like. I’m not sure if he was joking about having a preference for young girls or if he really does. I’m pretty sure he does so... GROSS. Human trafficking and men who prefer little girls... SO NOT MY FAVORITE AT ALL!

I liked the stories from the first and second weeks so far. These last four I couldn’t connect with, similar to the way I didn’t quite connect with American Gods. So far my favorites are October in the Chair and Faceless Brides in the House of Dread or whatever it’s called. It reminded me of Good Omens - a book I truly loved - with it’s cheekiness.


  1. Thanks for giving your overview on these, though they weren't your favorites. I probably wouldn't know about these otherwise, or read them ... but it's fun to know about them.

  2. I've read on another site that the next four stories are good so I'm looking forward to them :)