The Good, The Bad, The Ugly

Every time I read science fiction or fantasy, there’s the usual new power struggle, of defiance or denial – either way you want to think about it. And the book The First Fifteen Lives of Harry August is no different.

“As the full powers of my adult consciousness returned to my child’s body, I fell first into a confusion, then an agony, then a doubt, then a despair, then a screaming, then a shrieking, and finally, aged seven years old, I was committed to St Margot’s Asylum for Unfortunates, where I frankly believed myself to belong, and within six months of my confinement succeeded in throwing myself out of a window on the third floor” (North 8).

I thought this was beautiful, not because of the style, but because it shows the truth of every ability or power. That there’s is ugly just as there is beauty. I think every book stands to look at the faults of not only their characters but the powers they experience.

Too often you read books where it’s shame, embarrassment and then overjoyed acceptance. This book tells the truth that there is suicide in the world, there are people who can’t handle it, and although this whole book is not like that, I appreciate that it went in that direction and experienced it.

Not much to comment on besides that. I think every book should show the flaws just as much as the strengths.

North, Claire. The First Fifteen Lives of Harry August. New York, NY: Redhook Books, 2014. Print.


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