Don Delillo’s The Body Artist

I finished this book more than a week ago. I picked this one because the writer sounds familiar [I haven’t read any of his books, but I heard about him], its only 126 pages and the back cover says: “A metaphysical ghost story about a woman alone… intimate, spare, exquisite.” [Adam Begley, New York Times Book Review]

This book is about Lauren Hartke, “an artist whose work defies the limits of the body. Lauren is living on a lonely coast in a rambling rented house, where she encounters a strange, ageless man, a man with uncanny knowledge of her own life. Together they begin a journey into the wilderness of time – time, love and human perception.”

I, the reader, joined them in their journey. Got lost and found my way. Is it possible for the mind to play tricks after a tragedy especially when one chose to be alone? This is the question that I posed to myself while in the middle of the book. My answer, after reading the book is, its possible. And one can always outdo the mind because of reality.

After reading the book, I found other reviews: Magdalena Ball’s Slow, Spare and Painful…, and Michiko Kakutani’s ‘The Body Artis’: A Marriage Replayed Inside a Widow’s Mind.

QUOTE, UNQUOTE

“Maybe he falls, he slides, if that is a useful word, from his experience of an objective world, the deepest description of space-time, where he does not feel a sense of future direction-he slides into her expereinces, everyone’s, the standard sun-kissed chronology of events’

Am I the first human to abduct an alien?

~~~

It was the kind of day in which you forget words and drop things and wonder what it is you came into the room to get because you are standing here for a reason and you have to tell yourself it is just a question of sooner or later before you remember because you always remember once you are here.

~~~

There is something about the wind. It strips you of assurances, working into you, continuous, making you feel the hidden thinness of everything around you, all the solid stuff of a hundred undertakings-the barest makeshift flimsy.

~~~

How much myth do we build into our experience of time?

~~~

Maybe there are times when we slide into another reality but can’t remember it, can’t concede the truth of it because this would be too devastating to absorb.

~~~

Are you unable to imagine such a thing even when you see it?

Is the thing that’s happening so far outside experience that you’re forced to make excuses for it, or give it the petty credentials of some misperception?

Is reality too powerful for you?

Take the risk. Believe what you see and hear. Its the pulse of every secret intimation you’ve ever felt around the edges of your life.

3 Comments

  1. Ma’am, the book seemed to be very interesting. May i ask some more questions? Just to quench my thirst for more understanding.

    What did the story made you realized? Dit it change a perception that you currenly believe in ? or re-emphasized it?

    Is it a story based on true events and observed phsychological facts? Can it happen to you and me?

    As i understand from your review, the problem is about a lost and how to deal with it. Was the problem solved at the end?

    Sorry for the many questions…

  2. Thank you for your thought provoking questions!

    I realized that death brings certain feeling that one thought can never be felt before. I’ve experienced the same thing when my father passed away years ago.

    The story was fictional but it can possibly to anybody who experienced a terrible loss.

    The problem was solved in the end because Lauren somehow realized that she couldn’t live in a vacuum forever. She needed to move on.

    My entry won’t qualify for the textbook definition of a book review. As you can see, I put seasoned and expert reviewers in the post. I haven’t tried to review any book that I’ve read though there are a couple that I’d like to put my mind into.

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