13 June 2009

39. Visits From The Drowned Girl

Visits From The Drowned Girl - Steven Sherrill

This book is about a guy who works at great heights, cell phone towers, water towers, etc, who witnesses a girl's suicide. The girl happened to video tape the whole thing. Her saw this from 200 feet above while changing a bulb on top of a tower. He goes down to the site and gathers her belongings, including the tape and a backpack full of other tapes she had made. He does not call the police. He does not inform the family. He ends up becoming involved in the lives of the girls family.
1. The father is a hard-core evangelical preacher.
2. The mother is a mousy woman who can barely finish a sentence.
3. The sister is a dwarf.
4. The guy himself, and all his friends, and everyone he knows, are Red-Neck country folks with very crass ways of living.
The book says it is "blunt", "gutsy", and full of "rough humor".
I think the book is more rude than blunt, more obnoxious than gutsy, and full of nasty people doing nasty things and thinking it is normal (rough humor?). I do not think a small person being knocked down and humped by goats while others watch is funny. I don't think taking that same small person and trapping her in a giant jack-o-lantern while she is screaming is funny. I don't think a retarded man at the car wash givng $5 blow-jobs is funny. I don't find the "art" of "beautiful women shitting" is funny. Rough humor just wasn't funny. It was crude and disgusting in many parts.
I liked reading it because the story was interesting. I wanted to find out what was on the video tapes from the suicidal girl. I wanted to know what would happen to the man who found them. When the story ended it ended abruptly. What happened? Not a damned thing really. 241 pages and there is no ending. There is no closure. There is no body. There is no epiphany that causes the man to do the right thing.
In fact, it is exactly the opposite. Maybe calling the dead girl's mother and saying "Your stupid daughter is dead. The dumb bitch drowned herself. She's dead. Gone. Ain't comin' back." is supposed to be some of that "rough humor"? Sorry, I missed the part where I was supposed to chuckle at that.
There were some funny things. There were some interesting characters. The setting was very interesting, since it takes place where I live. I was surprised by that. Crowder's Mountain is about five miles from my house. The surrounding area is where this story takes place. That made the book better for me I guess.
I think this book was OK. I was expecting a bit more humor though. I guess now I know what to expect when they say "rough humor".
(Reading over my post, I realize I enjoyed this book more than the post makes it seem. It was better than what I have written. I picked on the negative aspects a lot. It really was an OK book.)

No comments:

Post a Comment