A Cruel Man Delighting in Flowers

...the mildness to which men ... had yielded was only half of the intoxication of beauty, while the other half ... was of such surpassing and terrible cruelty—the most cruel of men delights himself with a flower—that beauty ... failed quickly of its effect... 

Hermann BrochThe Death of Virgil

 

Jeremy Davies is made of ink, but don’t dip a feather in him. It tickles. He once painted a fingernail black and no one really noticed. He was disappointed. He’s also an editor, a religious atheist, a liker of strong coffees, a Shakespeare-lover, a political anarchist and someone who rarely has a pen when he needs one. He has been a PhD candidate, a personal trainer, a life model, a bouncer, an infantry soldier and someone who rarely had a pen when he needed one. He has had words published in a variety of places, in a variety of publications, in a variety of forms, in a variety of moments: Canada, Wet Ink, SMS and twelve minutes past three in the afternoon being some of these. His first novel, 'Missing Presumed Undead', will be re-published by Satalyte Publishing in February 2014. A second is on its way.

Borstal Boy - Brendan Behan, Benedict Kiely Behan has an engaging style and plays around with such things as phonetic spelling in an interesting and creative way for genuine impact. The narrative flow is sometimes strangely truncated and other times heavily languid, which is where it loses star-value for me... Yes, this kind of approach marries up well with the very conversational mode [a:Brendan Behan|41348|Brendan Behan|http://d.gr-assets.com/authors/1286716301p2/41348.jpg] is operating in, but it leaves me with the feeling sometimes that I'm missing out on key elements of the story. I mean, if he was in front of me telling me the story, I'd be able to interject and say something like: 'C'mon, Behan, what's tha' ag'in? I wan' ta know more about tha' part on the beach, ya ___t.' And he could fill me in, and I'd be a happy man: the inherent problem with conversational writing vs. conversation...

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However, there's plenty of interest, and much character to become involved in: the interplay between the 'types' of people---being a key theme here---is a fascinating aspect of the whole. The young Behan as IRA man remains radicalized to the end, but his mode of radicalization certainly shifts. He discovers much about how types of people use other types of people through the varied process of maintaining and enforcing typologies-of-people. His humanity and his brotherly love of humanity develops through a considered response to this: not a bland rejection, but a way of recognition of how these kinds of processes work as lenses upon experience.

Currently reading

Lyrical and Critical Essays
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The Western Canon: The Books and School of the Ages
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The Rebel (Penguin Twentieth-Century Classics)
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