Monday, December 17, 2012

Revenge of the Vinyl Cafe by Stuart McLean

Revenge of the Vinyl CafeRevenge of the Vinyl Cafe by Stuart McLean
My rating: 3 of 5 stars

A good set of stories in the Dave and Morley cannon, but not the best in the series.

Part of the appeal is always picking up the new book and stepping into life with your old friends and catching up with these quintessential Canadian tales and that was here for me.

The stories however didn't seem to come together as much as earlier volumes I have read. Part of it may be the mood I'm in over the last day while I read the book, but part of it is definitely the writing. When an author starts talking about the difficulty of writing a story, the difficulty of ending a story, the difficulty in finding a plot, you know you're not in for the A-level material frankly.

Several of the stories seemed improbable, several of the stories seem to be collected short ideas and collections of paragraphs rather than a cohesive tale. And while I did smile, I don't think I laughed out loud.

I loved the stories of Cape Breton and the interesting concepts McLean works in, like how the native Canadians made maple syrup without a pot and without boiling it. I don't know that his heart was truly in this one though. For example, the first story, the Monster in the sewer. I loved it, I'm telling all my friends about it. But it just stretched my credulity a little too thin for my taste.

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