On not reading Sarah Kane, or how to end up reading World War Z via losing Red Sorghum

One of my dearest bloggy friends has a thing for Sarah Kane. I had absolutely no idea who she was until she was mentioned in that blog. And then again. And then once again. When this blogger started mentioning the exact area of interest of this woman’s plays, I first ran to her Wikipedia page, and then to the closest bookstore. Couldn’t find anything there. Neither could I get help in the next one. Or the next.

But the thing is, a bookaholic like me can’t simply walk into a bookstore and walk out empty-handed! This has resulted in an exponentially growing list of future readings.

It began with Freud’s Sister by Macedonian author Goce Smilevski, which was an awesome read btw. When I finished I went to yet a different bookstore and when I couldn’t find a single Kane book, I went a little crazy and thought that, well, a good idea was to

20130610-144348.jpgAnd bought, well… a bunch of books, that included these: Hugo’s Les Miserables, Mo Yan’s Red Sorghum, Primo Levi’s Auschwitz Trilogy (which includes If This is A Man, The Truce, and The Drowned and The Saved), and Carlos Fuentes’ All the Happy Families.

After much deliberation, I decided to begin with Red Sorghum, it was the book that apealed the most to me as I’ve always been very interested in the Chinese Revolution and its aftermath. I was hooked. Bad. Then I got to some nasty parts where a guy is skinned alive, but I also found a very interesting connection to Gabriel García Márquez’s work (you know, 100 Years of Solitude), it was like Magic Realism on crack.

Anyways, then came the Final Presentations and all the cuckoo came out (man I’d get a beating out of that one in Spanish!) And somewhere in between not sleeping, running between school, Mount Olympus and therapy with regular stops at different coffee shops…my Red Sorghum got lost. I looked and looked and looked to no avail. I couldn’t just skip it and continue with my list, I was really into it. When the hellish presentations were done though, I knew I needed to get back to my reading and tried to find solace in Les Miserables, but that didn’t really work out since I know the story by heart by now. I should’ve just continue with Primo Levi as it was next on the list of preferences, but decided to give Kane another go, of course I couldn’t find her anywhere, but by then there was a new IT arrival at the bookstore: World War Z. By then, I’d seen the trailer of the movie and decided I wanted to watch it (again, absolutely noooothing to do with hot daddy Pitt playing the lead) and came across an interesting article on the original story that said its author was a historian who had based his plot on an oral account of World War II and included plausible assumptions of geopolitical courses different countries would take. I mean, thanks for trying so hard guys, but you didn’t have to, you had me right there at oral history of WWII turned zombie, I couldn’t help myself when I picked it up from the stall, or when I grabbed its prequel Zombie Survival Guide. In fact, my actual purchase included Juan of The Dead, as in Cuban Revolution on film turned zombie, which I grabbed on my way to the cash register in the most zombie-junkie fashion, without even stopping. Here’s what I’m talking about:


I did take one look at the Red Sorghum copies I found there, but as it’s an expensive edition, I couldn’t bring myself to pay for it a second time, ’cause I’m that cheap I guess, and thought I’d get a digital copy when I got home.

I came home, grabbed my World War Z, and didn’t put it down for hours and when I thought, already into Sunday, that it might be a good idea to do some packing as I’m moving next week…alas! My Red Sorghum was found in a weird bookshelf where I never ever put any book I’m currently reading.

The logical reason for this: I must’ve left it in nowhere land (the sofa, the floor, the kitchen sink) and the cleaning lady placed it where she thought best.

The obvious reason: I fooled Murphy’s law, like, bad! At the bookstore I grabbed Mo Yan, walked with it, and finally put it down BUT I DID buy a book on that same visit so there, Murphy was bamboozled. Ha! Take that Murphy’s law!

In any case, of course I was very very happy to have Mo Yan back, but I still can’t let go of Max Brooks! I’m sorry Nobel Prize, the Bestseller has got me by the balls!

As for Sarah Kane, I’m glad and ashamed the quest for her has led me these ways, but I’m hopeful my cousin who just came back from the States did find me a nice copy as I asked for. And if she didn’t, well I’ll just have to pay twice its prize in Amazon, because this is getting personal: I’ll find you Sarah Kane!

7 thoughts on “On not reading Sarah Kane, or how to end up reading World War Z via losing Red Sorghum

  1. 😆 This made me smile so much. Thank you.
    When I read the title of your post I thought you would break someone’s heart by saying you don’t get why your blog friend is so obsessed 😉
    I can never leave a bookstore without buying one book (at least) either.
    The books you bought sound very interesting but I haven’t read any of them even though I always want to check out Mo Yan’s writing. And I love that your choice of books is so diverse… I only seem to read British stuff… which might not be surprising but it’s a bit sad because you lose sight of the other good stuff that is definitely out there! ❤
    Take care dearie xx

  2. I really like the way you wrote this, great writing style! And I hope you get to read something by Kane soon!! (I’m sure a certain person would be excited to hear what you think of it!) xxx

  3. Pingback: I have no words / Undead inside | not all about cats

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