Transrealism is a revolutionary art form.
A major tool in mass thought-control is the myth of consensus reality…. Atwood, Pynchon and Foster-Wallace all employed transrealist techniques to challenge the ways that “consensus reality” defined who was normal and who was not, from the political oppression of women to the spiritual death inflicted on us all by modern consumerism.
When she reads things like that, Gert feels as if she’s been caught lying on the bed eating chocolates instead of doing her homework. As if she’s turned up to the Canute festival in an old sheet with a bucket on her head while everyone else has a portable sea with real waves, and a genuine trident.
Gert’s father read Greek, Latin, Italian, French, German and even a spot of Gaelic, yet he was often to be found reading what he called ” a silly book”. One of his favourite silly books was a girls’ school story called Leith and Friends, which he read at least once a year. A silly book has to be good enough to keep you reading and good enough to reread, even though you know it isn’t great literature. The re-reading criterion is vital: lots of books can be swallowed in one gulp, but the genuine silly book is savoured, like a nice jam tart with a cup of tea.
Here’s to the genre of the silly book. We need it just as much as we need the others.
Some of our favourites: Cooking with Fernet Branca; The Unscratchables; Farewell My Lovely; At Swim-Two-Birds; Eloise Goes to Moscow; My Father and Myself; The Thirty-Nine Steps; and of course, Leith and Friends.
What are your favourite sllly books?