Wednesday, April 30, 2008

On "Eeeee Eee Eeee" by Tao Lin ****

This might as well be the Tao Lin blog today, right? I promise to stop obsessing, but this guy is the freshest voice I've come across in a long while. Closest thing to him is perhaps Miranda July, but while July's material is arresting and different, Lin is the better short story writer--that is, when he's on his game. Many of his stories seem to occur in dream worlds, where anything can happen and where events are haphazard and nonsensical. Humor is abundant. At worst, his stories meander and lead nowhere. At best, they come together in some surprising way at the end that makes all the nonsense insightful. Eeeee Eee Eeee (dolphins speak) is Lin's novel and shares with his stories the same effects. Somehow, although much of it doesn't seem to go anywhere, and in the end, we're just sort of dropped off, as if we had woken in the middle of the dream, the book is compelling enough to keep one seated and at attention throughout. Perhaps it's that Lin makes bears and dolphins and hamsters and pizza delivery so utterly mysterious that we can't help but want to know what's really going on. Think Donnie Darko. Okay, think Donnie Darko without even an attempt at the end to make sense of all of it. Think Darko's crazier moments strung together in interesting ways.

2 comments:

ryan manning said...

the next night we ate whale

Short Story Reader said...

Whale on pizza? Someone I know had shark on pizza--and I don't mean that in a coy sort of (it's me sort of way) because I would not have shark on pizza, not ever, no way. whale--not that either. aren't those endangered or something? I'll have pizza on pizza, though. Pizza action.