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Douglas Coupland

Posted: Fri Oct 05, 2007 10:18
by humblebee
Anyone read The Gum Thief yet? Or seen any reviews?

I just read a fairly unenthusiastic review. After JPod I wondered if he'd got himself into a dead end. I hope not. But he just seems to be going over the same kind of themes again and again.

Posted: Fri Oct 05, 2007 13:36
by rainking123
if its worse than J-Pod then it's defianlty bad, I cant remember J-pod now i kinda blanked it out, the last one i really enjoyed was All familys are psycotic

Posted: Fri Oct 05, 2007 14:00
by bonjour_tristesse
I think it got a really rubbish review in the Metro anyways.

Posted: Sun Oct 07, 2007 15:50
by cath
I get the impression this one is far closer to All Families... than Generation X or Microserfs, and therefore more my cup o' hot chocolate. (I don't like tea).

Got this in paperback already, yay, but as t'other half has already commandeered it I haven't had a chance to start it yet. I am looking forward to it. I believe it's also set in Vancouver - no big surprise there! I guess it's a nice enough place to keep writing about :D

Posted: Thu Oct 25, 2007 10:09
by JohaN
i got a proof of the gum thief yesterday... i can't wait to start it! :)
i like the idea - it's a very coupland-by-numbers idea, perhaps, but definitely sounds interesting!

Posted: Thu Oct 25, 2007 10:20
by humblebee
Let us know what it's like!

Posted: Mon Nov 05, 2007 07:14
by JohaN
i'm not sure what i thought about "the gum thief"
(i'm going to TRY and write this without spoilers... but be advised there might be some!)

on the one hand, whenever i think about it, my immediate reaction is not positive... on the other, i got through it in two sittings, having both times just wanteed to read "20 pages before bed): meaning i couldn't stop reading it.

i think what i didn't like about it, was that it was all kindof obvious (especially bethany's obsession with death - after a while i felt like saying "jeez, okay, she's obsessed with death, i get it" and the same for roger's moroseness)... whereas one of the things i loved about microserfs (and the real gutpunch at the end) was that you realised how large a part of the book was about death... without coupland even really telling you much about it.

in a word, i think coupland has always been very good at SHOWING you what his characters are feeling/going through... here he starts to resort to TELLING you a little bit too much (which, i suppose, comes along with the first-person /confessional mode he's chosen here... but still)

and something else which hardly ever pleases me, is a writer writing about writing/writers: and coupland here (i think) tries to have a little fun with those writers oft-perceived to be HIS influences... but it comes off a bit more wanky than i think he intended.

BUT, ON THE OTHER HAND: the characters, as usual, felt really well-drawn, and real; even if some feel almost irredeemable, there is still a huge amount of sympathy that's transmitted for them... and that's no small feat, because they're certainly not immediately likable.

i also like all the different voices, styles etc.

and i did really like the (very open) ending, with nothing really being resolved... and it still feeling like an upswing, like a new beginning (almost)... although very faintly.

it's definitely worth reading though! and he still kicks most other contemporary novelists' ass in terms of sheer readability.

in short - i enjooyed it immensely, though i'm not quite sure why!

Posted: Wed Nov 14, 2007 16:36
by soft revolution
When is it out? I was in a book shop the other day thinking that I've not seen a new Coupland for a while.

Having said that, I stopped reading J-pod half way through. Just to spite Coupland by showing him that I couldn't be bothered to finish it on the strength of his earlier work, if he couldnt be bothered to make it any good (although he'll never know).

Unless he reads anorak.

In which case - can you write more stuff like Hey Nostradamus please. That was ace!

Posted: Fri Nov 16, 2007 14:02
by round bits of plastic
I didn't even now there was a new coupland book.. an di haven't heard of j-pod, when did that come out? man i am SO rubbish.

I got the hardback of hey nostradamus for about 3 from some dodgy book shop in stourbridge. woo.

Posted: Mon Nov 19, 2007 16:47
by miss deepfreeze

Posted: Mon Nov 19, 2007 17:09
by humblebee
Oh, he did, yeah! I was creasing up!

Posted: Mon Nov 19, 2007 17:40
by lynsosaurus
teecue wrote:is it just me, or did norris in coronation street really mention d.c. the other day?
maybe this would be better off in the corrie thread.
You've definitely been in this country too long, miss.

Posted: Tue Nov 20, 2007 16:32
by miss deepfreeze

Posted: Tue Nov 20, 2007 16:32
by miss deepfreeze

Posted: Tue Nov 20, 2007 17:29
by Martijn
I just remembered that, when it first came out, the local WH Smiths had put JPod on a shelf with computer books...

Posted: Wed Feb 06, 2008 11:21
by Gordon
I remember liking jPod. Do you all know they've made a sitcom of it?

Posted: Wed Feb 06, 2008 11:24
by round bits of plastic
theaeroplaneoverthesea wrote:I remember liking jPod. Do you all know they've made a sitcom of it?
i've not read it, but that soun dslike a NOT GOOD idea :-/

Posted: Wed Feb 06, 2008 11:47
by Gordon
I don't know if it's canadian or US but I saw an ad for it this Christmas in Toronto... I'll check out the details at some stage...

Posted: Wed Feb 06, 2008 11:50
by humblebee
It sounds a great idea to me. I didn't enjoy the book but I could see it working as a sitcom. I just wish it'd gone straight there without the book.

Posted: Wed Feb 06, 2008 12:07
by Paquito
CBC (Canada) have made it into a series, I've been, er, acquiring it from somewhere. Each episode is an hour long (well, 45 minutes minus the adverts) and from what I can tell, it's not really a sitcom, no canned laughter or owt like that.