I’ve just read a fantastic — in both senses of the word — book by Leslie Lee. It’s called PACKAGED, and it’s at Smashwords. I think it’s $2.99, but Smashwords won’t load at this moment, so I can’t check. He gave me a coupon for a free copy, just so you know. Wait a minute: It’s also at Barnes and Noble. Yeah, it is $2.99.
Okay, cheapskate that I am, I would have had to struggle with myself to wrest $2.99 from my clutch to buy an eBook from somebody whose work I hadn’t read, even somebody I like. I would have been so wrong to pass this book up!
Some bits were not the kind of bits I look for in a book. I generally avoid sexuality in writing, because it’s usually done so poorly, with more emphasis on logistics and mechanics than honest sensation. This book doesn’t have that drawback. The bits with sexuality in them are deeply sensual and absolutely flow with the story.
I’m late posting today because I’ve been looking up the term “bizarro” to see if this story fits the category. As is appropriate with bizarro, I can’t tell. This article in The Guardian calls bizarro “stupid and intelligent at the same time.” PACKAGED isn’t stupid, though. Bizarro Central says, among other things, “Bizarro strives not only to be strange, but fascinating, thought-provoking, and, above all, fun to read.” If that’s the case, I’m going to call PACKAGED bizarro.
PACKAGED begins as an ordinary story, then gradually becomes more and more dreamlike. It follows dream logic — or, at least, the kind of logic my dreams follow. If you never dream you’re somebody else or more than one person, if you never dream you’re naked or wearing somebody else’s clothes, if your dreams never turn violent and then silly or both at once, if your dreams never repeat scenes or situations with your having diametrically opposite reactions from one iteration to the next, read this book and enjoy my dream life.
The astounding thing is how much sense this wacky thing makes. There’s actually a story arc. Two story arcs: what happens and Tory’s growth and development. A highly satisfying conclusion left me wanting to keep dreaming but ready to wake up.
Oh, and I have a major crush on Red Brick.
Meanwhile, I’m posting today at Fatal Foodies about our gutter garden.
WRITING PROMPT: What’s the weirdest yet coherent dream you’ve ever had?