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All art is unstable. It's meaning is not necessarily that implied by the author, There is no authorative active voice. There are only multiple readings. David Bowie, 1995

Sunday, June 24, 2012

of ducks and swans and death and grief (Steampunk ... Yes!)

Have just finished reading, The Chemistry of Tears by Peter Carey.
Very Peter Carey-ish!

Think about the title as you read it. The words 'chemistry' and 'tears' reflect the novel's intricacies and dissections on a myriad of levels.

Went to hear Carey talk as part of the Luminato festival in Toronto
He was fantastic. Unfortunately eBooks are hard to write on so I had to have other titles signed.

... further thoughts on Chemistry of Tears. I had been hesitantly wondering about its relationship (somewhat tenuously) to the steampunk genre.
Really would have liked to ask Peter Carey about that--but you know how it is...
In the article, Of silver swans and steampunk, in Express Night (05/30/2012) by Stephen M. Deusneri, ! Asking questions in an auditorim full of others! Too theatening!
So imagine my surprise and feelings of vindication re my inuitve leaps when I came across this article where
Carey is quoted as saying that he,
“thinks his new novel, “The Chemistry of Tears,” might fall under the subgenre of “steampunk.”
“The notion, as I (Carey) understand it, is old technology in the modern world,” Carey says. His book has plenty of “old technology” — namely, 19th-century automata, incredibly intricate robots whose clockwork innards allowed them to (stiffly) simulate natural movement”
So, I'm feeling vindicated about my thoughts re steampunk and the novel.
The book showcases Carey at his pithy, puzzling best; relationally and historically, and leaves us with the disquieting reflection of the destruction of mankind by invention of the combustion engine.

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