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Go Ask Claudia

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So I picked this up yesterday and gave it a read. In terms of art, it's pretty great. I wish it was in color, but only because Chang has such great control over tones and shadows and the black & white seems limiting at times. Still, I love the way the book plays with the frame (a moment that particularly caught my eye was when one of the characters is snorting coke in the middle of a conversation and the coke-lines are in between the panels). And I would be remiss if I didn't applaude the use of different art styles throughout the story.

But as for the story, it's a bit more difficult to swallow (aw what the hell: pun INTENDED). It's a story that's torn between bitter misogny and fun satire. It's difficult to go from a parody of a classified ad to a woman about to blow her brains out while juxtaposed with a stereotypical pornaholic enjoying a blow-job scene. How stereotypical is the character of "Tiny"? Enough that I recognized him enjoying a virtual reality rape from the brilliant animated music video for Pearl Jam's "Do The Evolution". That's not to say this is plagarism. You can't plagarize a balding, fat pervert. But the book exists in stereotypes and while I understand that stereotypes exist for a reason, the predictablity of the character leads to a predictability of story...

...that is until the end of the book where Struass finally takes this cautionary tale of woe and goes a little crazy (I don't want to spoil these twists because I believe they're the best part of the book).

I severly underestimated this book when the book mission suggested that there be book clubs. "How to Make Money..." is a schizophrenic title and understanding the intentions of Strauss and Chang could lead to some very interesting and possibly very heated discussions.

7/10
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Added by Matt
11 years ago on 4 October 2006 14:27




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