About Me

My photo
My most recent single release - "My True North" - is now available on Bandcamp. Open my profile and click on "audio clip".

Thursday, January 2, 2014

Starting Strong In The New Year

I really liked Dave Eggers' quirky memoir "A Heartbreaking Work of Staggering Genius" (2001). "The Circle", his quietly terrifying novel from 2013 about technology run amok, has made me a believer.

Twenty something Mae Holland lands the entry level job of her dreams after a friend provides an entree to a northern California company called the Circle. Mae's life outside work begins quickly disappearing as a growing list of instant metrics displayed on her multiple screens starts becoming the way she measures her worth as an employee, a friend, a daughter. Eggers is masterful creating an innocuous and wholly plausible world, one that is also deeply creepy and riddled with Orwellian double-speak. Each new demand her employers make on Mae is framed by the leading, close-ended question - "Sound good?". The circle closes around her.

If you enjoyed the modern sensibilities of "Super Sad True Love Story" (Gary Shteyngart) or "A Visit From The Goon Squad" (Jennifer Egan), the pace and tone of this book, although heavier on dialogue than either of those, should appeal to you. As always, I'd love to hear your take on "The Circle". Though I'm not superstitious, it's a good sign the first book I've finished this year is so strong.

1 comment:

  1. I'm looking forward to reading this....I think! From your descriptions, it sounds a little too close to reality for me. But I loved Zeitoun, so I really want to read another Dave Eggers book. When can I retire?