Monday, September 29, 2014

Review: I Await the Devil's Coming

I Await the Devil's Coming
I Await the Devil's Coming by Mary MacLane

My rating: 2 of 5 stars

The kind of book that seems like it’s going to be tawdry or evil or SOMETHING but it reads more like the tortured diary of Gertrude Stein -- brief moments of lyricism “A little evil would do--a little of fine, good quality.” Stuff like that but it appears randomly and, ultimately, this is a diary of “nothingness” that MacLane says in the last entry, that is no different from the nothingness of the 3 months before or 3 months to come. about 80% of it is MacLane asking for an evil man, a devil, to come and take her away from her stifling existence. Sounds fine; not sure why she wants that except that she says, repeatedly, that she’s lonely and odd and a genius and desperate to experience life.

Basically, by the time the conversation with the Devil happens late in the text it’s not very fascinating.

I’m pretty disappointed in this text but I can see it as an interesting example of an honest self-assessment of a woman who was probably not much more miserable than many young women of the time and place. Then again, maybe she truly was.

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