Yesterday’s beer: Rogue Hazelnut Brown Nectar
Yesterday’s book: The River Swimmer by Jim Harrison
Notes: Jim Harrison works better in the novella form than as a full-bore novelist. His rages, lushness, run-on sentences, bravado, burly machismo, and lusts get overwhelming and pornographic in full-length form. There’s too much muchness for him to ever make a good short story–concision and well-honed plotting aren’t his strengths–but his novels (with the rare exception of Returning to Earth, which in a way is four interlinked novellas bound together by a single family) make me wish he had a sharp, feminist editor to wrap his knuckles every now and then. The one-damn-thing-after-another “narratives” are acceptable and even viscerally illuminating for 90 pages. Here, with “The Land of Unlikeness” and the title piece, the protagonists have frustrated–as opposed to fulfilled–appetites, which is both more interesting but also curiously unsatisfying.