Ex Libris Kirkland

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First Written 1948
Genre Fiction
Origin UK
Publisher Chapman Hall
My Copy fourth impression, cloth hardbound w/ gold lettering on spine
First Read December 16, 2005

The Loved One

Picked this up again when I was feeling ill - and as always, Waugh comes through. It's funnier than I remembered it, and more cruel, too.

I highly recommend this.

Noted on December 1, 2010

Funniest book about the mortuary industry ever.

Noted on May 21, 2010

She left the room and Dennis at once forgot everything about her. He had seen her before everywhere. American mothers, Dennis reflected, presumably knew their daughters apart, as the Chinese were said subtly to distinguish one from another of their seemingly uniform race, but to the European eye the Mortuary Hostess was one with all her sisters of the air-liners and the reception desks . . . She was the standard product. A man could leave such a girl in a delicatessen shop in New York, fly three thousand miles and find her again in the cigar stall at San Francisco, just as he would find his favourite comic strip in the local paper, and she would croon the same words to him in moments of endearment and express the same views and preferences in moments of social discourse. She was convenient; but Dennis came of an earlier civilization with sharper needs.

Quoted on May 21, 2010

Aimee Thanatogenos spoke the tongue of Los Angeles; the sparse furniture of her mind - the objects which barked the intruder's shins - had been acquired at the local High School and University; she presented herself to the world dressed and scented in obedience to the advertisements; brain and body were scarcely distinguishable from the standard product, but the spirit- ah, the spirit was something apart. . . An umbilical cord of cafes and fruit shops, of ancestral shady businesses (fencing and pimping) united Aimee, all unconscious, to the high places of her race. As she grew up the only language she knew expressed fewer and fewer of her ripening needs; the facts which littered her memory grew less substantial; the figure she saw in the looking-glass seemed less recognizably herself. Aimee withdrew into a lofty and hieratic habitation.

Quoted on May 21, 2010

Ex Libris Kirkland is a super-self-absorbed reading journal made by Matt Kirkland. Copyright © 2001 - .
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