book review: crash

And this is why I worry when I pick up a J.G. Ballard book. Crash had some interesting aspects to it, but I’m just not that interested in reading about semen, orifices and jutting out pubises. My favourite line in the book came from the introduction when Ballard says “in a sense pornography is the most political form of fiction, dealing with how we use and exploit each other, in the most urgent and ruthless way.” And I guess I’m just a romantic since I hate the idea of the words “use” and “exploit” being anywhere near human relationships. Which kind of sours the whole experience of this one. I have a hard time believing that people could possibly live in a manner at all approaching what is portrayed in here. Which isn’t that surprising since I have my doubts about how a lot of lives are lived.

But I read the book. It was similar to Millennium People in that there’s a mysterious figure manipulating a fringe group of weirdos. The main character tries to learn more about the mysterious figure, gets drawn into his world and then the figure leaves him alone to deal with the aftermath. These two books were written 30 years apart but felt practically the same except Millennium People had fewer people masturbating to car crashes and fucking armpit wounds. Millennium People was also interesting whereas Crash might be important and leave me with more to think about since it took me out of my comfort zone, but I didn’t really like it much at all.

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