Yup, this is another one where my lack of in-depth knowledge on the source topic definitely left me stranded. Some post-read googling has taught me a bit about Kathy Acker, but oh man am I still so confused. She was an experimental novelist and post-modern writer, per Wikipedia, who died in the 1990s – but this book is supposedly about her/from her perspective and is set in 2017. Which is I guess experimental in its own right and therefore lives up to her legacy? Or maybe I’m just dumb.
Crudo was mercifully short. That’s probably going to be my highest praise for it. I just had a very hard time keeping track of what I was reading, somehow in less than 200 pages I just stayed lost. I also have yet to find a novel this heavily rooted in our present political reality that I can stand. In that way, it reminded me of The Golden House, another one I was pretty down on. Crudo is very different from Golden House, I guess it’s mostly the timing and the dislike that ties them together. I’m rambling. But I feel like so is Laing.
Crudo is told simultaneously in first and third person, the narrator is both “Kathy” and “I”. Regardless, she is a writer and she is getting married and these seem to be the only things about her that we know. I’m also not convinced she should be getting married but, hey, her life. The book was entirely stream of consciousness, but for that to work, it has to be a consciousness you’re going to care about.