― sunny successor (katharine), Tuesday, 13 June 2006 11:48 (eleven years ago) Permalink
i enjoyed it, for what that's worth. amazon is full of 1 and 5 star reviews (more 1s than 5s). critics are divided.
― koogy wonderland (koogs), Tuesday, 13 June 2006 11:59 (eleven years ago) Permalink
― Raymond Cummings (Raymond Cummings), Tuesday, 13 June 2006 14:45 (eleven years ago) Permalink
― askance johnson (sdownes), Tuesday, 13 June 2006 14:56 (eleven years ago) Permalink
I tend to really like reading him, though I do admit a general sense of dissatisfaction with the endings as well. It's more like I'm interested with the characters than with the resolutions to the stories themselves.
All Families are Psychotic was a failed experiment, for sure, and I think he rushed it, because there were a lot of stupid little mistakes in there, like the their/there/they're thing, and at one point one of his characters picked up a spoon but put down a fork (or vice versa). The two after that, where he wrote as a female character, also hit and miss, though Eleanor Rigby was better than I thought it was going to be.
JPod was actually quite good, because I totally recognize the characters. I just wish he'd have gotten rid of those sections where he wasted tens of pages of paper per copy trying to make some nerd point; but you can bet there's someone poring through the digits of pi looking for the one number he's changed, so maybe that's part of the joke. And I do kind of like the concept of him writing himself in as the antagonist, so maybe that makes up for the eye-rolling parts.
― Sean Carruthers (SeanC), Tuesday, 13 June 2006 15:51 (eleven years ago) Permalink
He's in an odd position, the guy, and while it's easy to dismiss him for it -- as a kind of teenage enthusiasm -- there's a level on which I keep deciding it's awfully brave of him. He's stranded: he writes books that are about people's lives and culture now, in a very "pop" way, a very light-reading unliterary way -- but he takes the stuff seriously enough, reaches for enough emotional impact, and plays enough tricks that it can feel like his writing aspires to high lit. The fact that it's really neither/nor brings him in for a lot of abuse (the terrible downslide in quality doesn't help, either), but it always makes me wonder why there aren't more people successfully filling that particular gap in fiction.
(And then the answer sometimes comes that people are maybe more interested in the "culture" part than the "taking it seriously" / "raching for emotional impact" part, and "culture" is always easily sold in movie form. Oh D Coupland, you were, evidently, my generation's Garden State.)
― nabisco (nabisco), Tuesday, 13 June 2006 15:59 (eleven years ago) Permalink
― nabisco (nabisco), Tuesday, 13 June 2006 16:02 (eleven years ago) Permalink
yike, that sounds like an eye-rolling part to me. can anyone write fiction without putting themselves in it or doing some meta-footnote trickery nowadays? ditto Kaufman-esque movie trickery ..... used to love that stuff but I am way past the breaking point. get (1) original gimmick.
― Renard (Renard), Tuesday, 13 June 2006 16:12 (eleven years ago) Permalink
― nabisco (nabisco), Tuesday, 13 June 2006 16:14 (eleven years ago) Permalink
― 333333333333 (33333), Tuesday, 13 June 2006 16:14 (eleven years ago) Permalink
― 333333333333 (33333), Tuesday, 13 June 2006 16:15 (eleven years ago) Permalink
I'm just saying that post David Foster Wallace / Paul Auster / Bret Easton Ellis / Charlie Kaufman and whoever else in modern fiction has written themself in as a character, I consider it a mark on the negative side to fall back on this tactic. it seems overused in modern fiction. not a clever idea to "redeem the eye-rolling parts." that's all ....
I do like Coupland, I read all his stuff up through Polaroids.
― Renard (Renard), Tuesday, 13 June 2006 16:36 (eleven years ago) Permalink
I gave DC a ticket to the glasgow underground once. He promised to put it in one of his collages. Ahem.
― stet (stet), Tuesday, 13 June 2006 16:38 (eleven years ago) Permalink
― nabisco (nabisco), Tuesday, 13 June 2006 17:27 (eleven years ago) Permalink
- "even your list is reaching"- "And how much exactly is it a 'trick'"
― nabisco (nabisco), Tuesday, 13 June 2006 17:30 (eleven years ago) Permalink
― jeffrey (johnson), Tuesday, 13 June 2006 21:34 (eleven years ago) Permalink
how JPod relates to microserfs is interesting, same characters(?) but no mention of their earlier life / exploits. (um, read a review recently for some other book that did something similar). ha, object re-use applied to literature i guess.
what did they want the safety deposit key for? did they ever use it?
spent a lot of the book confusing d. coupland with w. gibson, especially 'pattern recognition'. coupland's odd in that i've read 75% of his books but don't really care about the other 25%. i guess i only bought this one because i saw it cheap and the microserfs connection.
― koogy wonderland (koogs), Wednesday, 14 June 2006 12:00 (eleven years ago) Permalink
― suzy (suzy), Wednesday, 14 June 2006 12:19 (eleven years ago) Permalink
i didn't see anything odd in the autism theories, oddly enough - had thought the same thing to myself for some time (possibly as a result of reading it elsewhere).
didn't he try and explain the parents in terms of being the Greatest Generation or something. or were they just hippy parents 40 years on?
review from the weekend (possibly several weekends ago that i just got around to reading prior to recycling) mentioned John Irving and, whilst dc hiself denies the connection having not read any JI, there is a similarity there, i think. unfortunately i fell asleep before he was talked about on newsnight review.
― koogy wonderland (koogs), Wednesday, 14 June 2006 13:08 (eleven years ago) Permalink
― suzy (suzy), Wednesday, 14 June 2006 13:11 (eleven years ago) Permalink
it's not very interesting though.
― jed_ (jed), Wednesday, 14 June 2006 13:45 (eleven years ago) Permalink
they give away the end! 8)
(plus she didn't shoot the biker, it was electrocution.)
― koogy wonderland (koogs), Wednesday, 14 June 2006 14:34 (eleven years ago) Permalink
reading jpod at the moment. i like it. find it hard to stop reading. a bit too knowing with the clever-cleverness at times but am looking forward to reading the rest of his books.
― mr x, Saturday, 8 December 2007 21:00 (nine years ago) Permalink
Also, how is there a TV series of Jpod? It's so weird, like The IT Crowd crossed with Ikea and nothing like the book at all.
― James Mitchell, Friday, 25 January 2008 01:30 (nine years ago) Permalink
I actually had a moment of nostalgia and read JPod! It was not good, but all the not-good things about it were like familiar Coupland things that just made me go "aww" instead of "eww." Kind of an "oh, Couplandpaws" thing.
― nabisco, Friday, 25 January 2008 02:00 (nine years ago) Permalink
Is anybody bothering with Generation A?
― James Mitchell, Monday, 5 October 2009 07:33 (eight years ago) Permalink
Just got it out the library. Not read it yet. Nice yellow cover though (reminds me of those old gollancz sf books).
― my name is ὀνοματοποιία (Ned Trifle II), Monday, 5 October 2009 08:27 (eight years ago) Permalink
Publishers sent me a copy in August, first time I've ever been meh-ed out by Coupland (whose cursory observations usually bring me out in hives of love but not this time).
― edward everett horton hears a who (suzy), Monday, 5 October 2009 08:52 (eight years ago) Permalink
I take it that the story is to Generation X what Jpod was to Microserfs?
― James Mitchell, Monday, 5 October 2009 08:53 (eight years ago) Permalink
i.e. a rewrite with updated references to Facebook and the like.
Argh, jPod gave me a rash, and since then each new Coupland book has been held in my hands briefly in the bookshop before I think "this will be awful" and put it back.
― ein fisch schwimmt im wasser · fisch im wasser durstig (a passing spacecadet), Monday, 5 October 2009 09:37 (eight years ago) Permalink
Bizarre thing about JPod is that the TV series was such an improvement on the book.
― treefell, Monday, 5 October 2009 09:52 (eight years ago) Permalink
anybody get the custom-designed dustjacket?
― DAN P3RRY MAD AT GRANDMA (just1n3), Monday, 5 October 2009 15:11 (eight years ago) Permalink
Didn't the series have Alan Thicke? I think that was why I was afraid of watching it.
― The ever dapper nicolars (Nicole), Monday, 5 October 2009 15:14 (eight years ago) Permalink
He was awesome in Jpod.
― James Mitchell, Monday, 5 October 2009 17:42 (eight years ago) Permalink
Generation A left me underwhelmed I have to say. Seemed to start off well and it was a good idea but it just seemed to coast a bit after the first few chapters. Also I wasn't convinced by the characters from different countries, the european guy and the Indian guy were both too stereotypical which irritated me. Fun in places, but overall a bit empty. You know, like life. Ha!
― PC Thug (Ned Trifle II), Wednesday, 28 October 2009 10:36 (eight years ago) Permalink
45 thoughts on the next decade:
Stupid people will be in charge, only to be replaced by ever-stupider people. You will live in a world without kings, only princes in whom our faith is shattered.
We will accept the obvious truth that we brought this upon ourselves.
― kind of shrill and very self-righteous (Dr Morbius), Sunday, 10 October 2010 16:51 (seven years ago) Permalink
The day Copeland writes a book about the singularity, I'll cry.
― The Ten Things I Hate About Commandments (Abbbottt), Sunday, 10 October 2010 19:59 (seven years ago) Permalink
Coming to the ritzier neighbourhoods of Vancouver: Coupland's V-POLES.
Operative word in the headline is "may".
― everything, Wednesday, 23 May 2012 18:40 (five years ago) Permalink
I've been getting back into him. (Loved the first four books as a teenager; didn't like Polaroids or Coma and never followed him again.) Read Hey Nostradamus over the summer and just finished Generation A, liked both a lot and actually thought Generation A was great, the way all this stuff that never really added up suddenly came together in a totally unexpected way with the twist. Not a rewrite of X at all.
― No purposes. Sounds. (Sund4r), Wednesday, 27 September 2017 04:05 (one month ago) Permalink
Been digging back into Microserfs - always thought his stuff was light fluffy reading but this is kind of a slog tbh
― licorice oratorio (baaderonixx), Wednesday, 27 September 2017 10:24 (one month ago) Permalink
the european guy and the Indian guy were both too stereotypical which irritated me
I really liked Harj (who was Sri Lankan, not Indian). I'm not sure in what ways he was stereotypical, really (although I'm not sure "Vetharanayan" is a common last name; "Vethanarayan" sounds more likely to me). I really liked how he was always very conscious of the stereotypical impressions that Westerners, especially Americans, would have of him, and would manipulate or leverage these to achieve his goals. There were two major French characters and I don't really think "self-absorbed WoW addict" or "sarcastic assholish scientific genius" are dominant French stereotypes?
― No purposes. Sounds. (Sund4r), Wednesday, 27 September 2017 13:34 (one month ago) Permalink