Monday, March 12, 2012

Love Invents Us

Sometimes it's okay to judge a book by its cover. For example, when the cover boasts a review like this, from the Los Angeles Times: "Bloom is a truly excellent writer...lyrical and funny....There is a line worth quoting on almost every page of this book." Under these circumstances, one would be wise to judge the book by the cover, because it's true: Amy Bloom is an excellent writer and Love Invents Us is lyrical, funny, and quotable.

The story follows the lives of its three main characters, Elizabeth, Max, and Horace/Huddie, as they grow, mature, fall in and out of love, and deal with life's intricacies. As I read all I could think was that I want someone to make this a movie because it would be so interesting to see how a screenwriter/director/actors interpret it. Here's an excerpt:

Huddie's wires cross every which way now. Sight, smell, taste, and touch enfold one another. Wet is like sweet is like heat is the aching pulse, is salt caking. Her smell is the smell of the unwrapped ready-to-rot figs, and for a lost half hour he scrunches thin lilac tissue paper around their small purple asses, tilting their stems so each seamed bottom is turned to its most seductive side. Carrot fronds are her hair; the slick celadon crack of a broken honeydew is hers and tastes cool, then warm. He puts his lips flat against tomatoes, plums, peaches, and nectarines before stacking them, and they ripen too fast, with hard-to-sell dark spots where his saliva has gathered and seeped in. Marshmallows, not even of interest since early Boy Scouts, roll out of their bags, pull his fingers into their sweet dusty white middles, pull themselves up around his fingertips. Half a bag. Twenty-three marshmallows. His fingers are stiff, powdered white, and his throat is glued shut, but the sugar thickly coating his lips and the drying tug from the roof of his mouth to the root of his tongue is so like a past moment between them he has to sit down behind the unshelved goods, head resting on the giant cans of juice, sticky hands hard over sticky mouth, and cry without making a sound.

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