Six Degrees of Separation // Revolutionary Road


The idea behind this exercise is to connect books in any way that’s meaningful to use, from the profound to the inane. Although Kevin Bacon is typically behind the six degrees game, books are just a bit more fun.

I will keep this quick, as I have a tiny, fussy baby calling my name as best she can – I just miss this space and thinking and talking about books.

Revolutionary Road by Richard Yates – this month’s starting point – is great, but terribly, terribly depressing. You know what else qualifies for this distinction? Wuthering Heights, but I loathe that book. Interestingly enough, I enjoyed Sabin Willett’s retelling Abide With Me. Abide With Me features a summer romance, which naturally I relate to the ‘80s.

This brings me to The Body by Stephen King, which spawned the quintessential ’80s movie Stand by Me (which relates nicely to the title Abide with Me, which I just now realized. One of the lovely things about Stand By Me/The Body is the idea of childhood friends. This, along with it being a love letter to small towns, is one of the more lovely aspects to Nickolas Butler’s Shotgun Lovesongs.

Speaking of an ode to small towns, Empire Falls very much qualifies. In fact, most of what Richard Russo writes brings declining small towns to life. This particular novel is excellent and, in my opinion, very much deserved to win the Pulitzer Prize – as did Cormac McCarthy’s The Road (though it’s not his best work, in my opinion). I should have one more link, but I loved the symmetry of beginning with Revolutionary Road and ending with The Road too much to add another one.

It has absolutely nothing to do with lack of inspiration or time or exhaustion. Nothing at all. If you’d like to participate, please do!

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