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Outliers: The Story of Success By Malcolm Gladwell
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The Lover's Dictionary: A Novel

The Lover's Dictionary - David Levithan I thought the concept of this book was well done. I really liked the idea of the "lover's dictionary" which redefines language through the spectrum of the relationship of these two distinct characters, or actually the narrator relating to an unidentified "you." I appreciated the feeling of being able to read the book in no particular order which effectively breaks down the traditional novel fomat. I liked the way in which each of the entries were well written and incisive and made me think. And yet, even as I can see why this book is a worthy one, as I was reading it, a part of me couldn't help but want it to end. There are various reasons for this, I believe. 1. our narrator was a deeply sensitive and interesting one, but he came across as self-indulgent at times. 2. As the novel progressed, it became increasingly clear that the relationship was not a particularly healthy one- she was an alcoholic, and he appears to suffer from fairly severe self esteem issues. Furthermore, a great "betrayal" is uncovered and the way in which the characters choose to deal with and "overcome" it seems glossed over to me. Throughout the course of the novel, there is no clear way in which they appear to overcome their (fairly serious) problems that I could see and so, sometimes the entries, as poignant as they are, fall a little flat to me. I think the point of the novel is to express the idea that love is so transformative, that it can define and redefine language and vice versa. And yet- the characters didn't seem bettered by their relationship. He is obsessed and clingy, and she seems selfish throughout. Perhaps the point of the novel is to express the ultimately fallible and personal and very human experience of love and I respect what the author is trying to do. Nonetheless some reason, his attempt seemed somewhat thin to me at times.