Wednesday, February 11, 2009

The Suicide Shop by Jean Teule (France) + New Blog!!

The Suicide Shop by Jean Teule
Review by: Lauren

The Suicide Shop, set in a futuristic world, is about the Tuvache family who sells the means for people to kill themselves (ropes tied for hanging, poison in bottles, and more). Mishima, Lucrece, and their children Vincent, Marilyn, and Alan are in the business to help others, though they cannot personally use any of their products. When asked why not, their mother replies that “I’ve told you a hundred times: because it’s impossible. Who’d look after the shop?” However, the parents have tried out one item and greatly regret this decision for most of the book. You see, they tested a condom with a hole in it (for those that want to die from an STD) and the product was their last son Alan who is a disgrace to the moody family. After all, he’s just too happy!

Alan is the type of kid who likes to draw fun pictures, sing, and smile at his parents. But if you have parents that are dealing with death everyday, this is definitely not their type of child. The family tries to do all they can to change him and make him just a little bit more morose, but nothing ever seems to work. As time goes on, Alan even seems to be rubbing off on the rest of the family, showing them the good and happy in life. At one point, he’s talking to a customer who believes that they are horrible looking and Alan replies with “How are you monstrous? What on earth are you saying? You’re like everyone else: the same number of ears, eyes, a nose…What’s the difference?”

Each chapter is relatively short and overall, the book reads a lot like little short stories that are all connected. Even though this story is called The Suicide Shop, it’s actually a very amusing read and will most likely have you laughing out loud at some points. It also has a great message though, underneath it all, and that is the love of life, just like Alan is trying to show his family.

I must say though that the ending had me quite shocked. I didn’t see it coming at all, but after some thought, I think it’s fitting. This is a quick read that is definitely recommended!
French Novel that was Translated into English for a Publisher in England
On another note, I wanted to mention a new blog that you should all check out. Authors Toni Hargis and Michael Harling (I've got guest blogs/interviews from them on here) have banded together to talk about an American in the UK and a gal from England in the U.S.

Sunday, February 8, 2009

What Countries Do YOU Want To Know About?!

Question Mark Pictures, Images and Photos

I've had a lot of people offer to help me out with ideas for other countries and I seriously appreciate it. I'm sure I'll be coming to you all in the future with questions. However, I wanted to give everyone ELSE a chance to learn about other countries....whether it's entertainment related or not.

Now, my idea is to find someone who is from that country (or if we can't, perhaps someone who is living there at the moment or has visited) to answer the reader's questions.

If you fall under any of the above categories and don't mind answering questions, let me know with the name of the country.

As for everyone else, what country do YOU want to hear about? Leave your thoughts in the comments and I'll get to work on the first one as soon as I can!