03 December 2009

Book Review: Seconds of Pleasure by Neil LaBute

I guess this is what one gets when one writes about the dynamics of male-female relationships. This book is a collection of stories that detail the politics and reality of relationships between men and women.

So, why did I pick this book? I have been impressed with the work of Neil LaBute before. I am a big fan of his work, and I have seen both the movie and play version of The Shape of Things. What I like about his work is the candid and frank depiction of human emotion, how humans can be difficult, unpredictable, and incomprehensible at times.

So, this is a collection of short stories about various male-female relationships. Some are one-sided, some happen while in a plane, some are about arguments about whether to have a baby or not, some are about nagging wives and narrow-minded husbands. Some are stories that happen just in the head of one character, and nobody of the characters have names at all.

What I like about this book perhaps is the fact that it provides me with vignettes and a small snapshot of what it is like to enter the politics of sex. The various moves that men have to negotiate in order to satisfy women, the various rather irrational behavior by the women and also by the men, the various ways in which their modes of communication doesn't seem to match and therefore lead to trouble.

Anyway, although I enjoyed reading the book, I couldn't say that I enjoyed it immensely. I guess it has something to do with the topic: I can find other topics in which I would be more interested in reading. Oh well, I've finished reading it, and now it's back in the library.

See my other book reviews here.

(Bizarre Sculpture at Union, from my DC Buildings Series)

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