Only Revolutions

Hardcover Ü Only Revolutions MOBI ï

Only Revolutions [BOOKS] ⚦ Only Revolutions ✫ Mark Z. Danielewski – Polishdarling.co.uk They were with us before Romeo Juliet And long after too Because they re forever around Or so both claim, carolling gleefully always sixteen Sam and Hailey, powered by an ever rotating fleet of cars, They were with us before Romeo Juliet And long after too Because they re forever around Or so both claim, carolling gleefully always sixteen Sam and Hailey, powered by an ever rotating fleet of cars, from Model T to Lincoln Continental, career from the Civil War to the Cold War, barrelling down through the Appalachians, up the Mississippi River, across the Badlands, finally cutting a nation in half as they try to outrace History itself By turns beguiling and gripping, finally worldwrecking, Only Revolutions is unlike anything ever published before, a remarkable feat of heart and intellect, moving us with the journey of two kids, perpetually of summer, perpetually sixteen, who give up everything except each other.


About the Author: Mark Z. Danielewski

Mark Z Danielewski is an American author best known for his booksHouse of Leaves, Only Revolutions, The Fifty Year Sword, The Little Blue Kite, and The Familiar seriesDanielewski studied English Literature at Yale He then decided to move to Berkeley, California, where he took a summer program in Latin at the University of California, Berkeley He also spent time in Paris, preoccupied mostly with writingIn the early s, he pursued graduate studies at the USC School of Cinema Television He later served as an assistant editor and worked on sound for Derrida, a documentary based on the life of the Algerian born French literary critic and philosopher Jacques DerridaHis second novel, Only Revolutions, was released in The novel was a finalist for the National Book Award His novelThe Fifty Year Swordwas released in the Netherlands in A new version with stitched illustrations was released in the United States including a limited edition release featuring a latched box that held the book On Halloween , Danielewski conducted staged readings of the book at the REDCAT Theater inside the Walt Disney Concert Hall in Los Angeles Each year was different and included features such as large scale shadows, music, and performances from actors such as Betsy Brandt Breaking BadOn May , , he released the first volume, The Familiar Volume One Rainy Day in Mayin his announced volume series The Familiar The story concerns a year old girl who finds a kitten The second volume, The Familiar Volume Into the Forestwas released on Oct , , The Familiar Volume Honeysuckle Paincame out June , , and The Familiar Volume Hadesarrived in bookstores on Feb , , and The Familiar Volume Redwoodwas released on Halloween His latest release, The Little Blue Kite, is out nowQuick FactsHe is the son of Polish avant garde film director Tad Danielewski and the brother of singer and songwriter Annie Decatur Danielewski, aka Poe House of Leaves, Danielewski s first novel, has gained a considerable cult following In , Danielewski toured with his sister across America at Borders Books and Music locations, promoting Poe s album Haunted, which reflects elements of House of LeavesDanielewski s work is characterized by experimental choices in form, such as intricate and multi layered narratives and typographical variationIn , his pieceThrown, a reflection on Matthew Barney s Cremaster , appeared on display at the Guggenheim Museum in New YorkOfficial Yarn Ink apparel inspired by his books House of Leaves andThe Familiar is now available through his official website,and EtsyReadon his Wikipedia page.



10 thoughts on “Only Revolutions

  1. Sean Sean says:

    Howdy there, O happy reader It is of the utmostand most sincerest importancethat you understandwhat kind of adventureyou will bestow upon your selfby undertaking and reapingthe novel that HOUSE OF LEAVES very own Mark Z Danielewski has sown.Sam and Hailey and Hailey and Samare two star crossed loversdriving across America andthrough time as their loveblossoms and grows and yetso do the country and timesthey invade most irreparably.It is the ambition and the braverythat makes this labyrinthian p Howdy there, O happy reader It is of the utmostand most sincerest importancethat you understandwhat kind of adventureyou will bestow upon your selfby undertaking and reapingthe novel that HOUSE OF LEAVES very own Mark Z Danielewski has sown.Sam and Hailey and Hailey and Samare two star crossed loversdriving across America andthrough time as their loveblossoms and grows and yetso do the country and timesthey invade most irreparably.It is the ambition and the braverythat makes this labyrinthian puzzle bookworth sticking with, but the narrative a concoction of prose and poetryTOGETHER makes for a storyso confusing and surreal so as to rendermost of the book inexplicable and incomprehensible.Worth gazing upon for severe interestdear reader, but be warned it is a book most troubling, andmostly impossible to follow.Final Grade C p u o o o q ssod so pu u qno so ooq s p u q nq p p s u s o uodn u z o q su d o u pu q dx u ooq o so pu o s os ns pu u sn uo os o s o s o od pu so d o uo o uo u nq u s o ooq zznd u u q s s q pu uo q s q d so p u s pu uno op os pu s o pu s osso q o s no pu sso u ps o p sso s o s pu pu pu s u os s s u p z u o ,s o sno ou u d pu u pun q s no uodn o s q no n u p o pu pu s pun no u od s u s so pu so n o s p dd o p o


  2. Adam Adam says:

    This book was like a cross between Da Vinci Code and something by Palahniuk And I mean that in the most insulting way possible.The summaries and reviews I read before getting the book had all focused on how it s the same story about two people told from each of their perspectives Therefore, I hoped going in that it would have some interesting and thought provoking juxtapositions.There were no interesting juxtapositions When reading one character s take on a situation, the question was not in This book was like a cross between Da Vinci Code and something by Palahniuk And I mean that in the most insulting way possible.The summaries and reviews I read before getting the book had all focused on how it s the same story about two people told from each of their perspectives Therefore, I hoped going in that it would have some interesting and thought provoking juxtapositions.There were no interesting juxtapositions When reading one character s take on a situation, the question was not in what subtle way would the other character s view of it differ, but rather in what way would the other character s view be the exact opposite If he said that he drove the car with great skill, would she say he drove poorly, or would she say that SHE drove the car with great skill To give an idea of the degree to which this book sucked, here s the summary of a typical scenario from each character s perspective And as much as you may think that I m making this up because you don t believe that something this bad could possibly have been published, let me assure you that I am not Let me repeat you may find this scene summary to be offensive It is Danielewski s scene, straight out of the book, not embellished, not made up He says he has a big penis, she has small breasts, he satisfied her sexually and ejaculated massive quantities of come all over her, and then he drove the car with great skill, and she got car sick.She says he has a small penis, she has large breasts, he performed poorly sexually and ejaculated a tiny amount of come on the ground next to her, and then she drove the car with great skill, and he got car sick.It was all so juvenile and formulaic that I had a hard time believing it was really happening and a much harder time believing that anyone could get throughthan a few pages of this without dismissing it as total shit How could any review of this book not trash it completely I suffered through to the end of the book just so that I could assure myself that it did not, in fact, get better at some point It did not This book was horrible.I gave this book a chance for the same reasons that I gave House of Leaves a chance mostly that they seemed unique, and I like unique books and writing styles Both books turned out to be without substance and poorly written by someone who appears to have the maturity of a teenager.I m done with Danielewski He s a hack


  3. Michelle Michelle says:

    This review has been hidden because it contains spoilers To view it, click here For every bit of love I felt for Danielewski s House of Leaves, which was quite a bit, I felt an equal amount of dislike for this one For me this book embodies a word I have recently seen thrown around Goodreads Gimmicky It was gimmicky with a capital G Gimmicky with all caps GIMMICKY It was just bad, man Bad, bad, bad The book tells the story of Sam and Hailey, eternal sixteen year old road tripping Romeo and Juliet types who drive across country and through history Their story is told For every bit of love I felt for Danielewski s House of Leaves, which was quite a bit, I felt an equal amount of dislike for this one For me this book embodies a word I have recently seen thrown around Goodreads Gimmicky It was gimmicky with a capital G Gimmicky with all caps GIMMICKY It was just bad, man Bad, bad, bad The book tells the story of Sam and Hailey, eternal sixteen year old road tripping Romeo and Juliet types who drive across country and through history Their story is told by each of them, and is printed on two sides so that each cover of the book could be either the front or back cover One side is the story told in Sam s point of view, and if you flip the book upside down and to what would be the back cover, you can read it from Hailey s point of view I guess the layout of the book was a unique idea An interesting concept The problem was that Sam and Hailey s story wasn t interesting to read At all The dreamy, often misspelled kiddie speak which they used reminded me a little bit of Francesca Lia Block s books, but she does it oh so much better.I almost never do this, but after I read the book I read its Wikipedia page I don t know what I was looking for exactly Maybe I was looking for a special meaning that I must have missed because surely it couldn t have been that bad, right Wrong Incidentally, the most interesting things about the book were found on its Wiki page, which leads me to believe that either the author himself or a huge fan must have written it But, nothing was enough to sway my opinion or call myself a dumbass for missing some earth shattering motif that another smarter reader would have picked up on The information below is quoted directly from Wikipedia The first letter of each 8 page section is larger and bold when compared to the other letters When the reader puts the single letters together from Hailey s side they spell out Sam and Hailey and Sam and Hailey etc When read from Sam s side, they spell out Hailey and Sam and Hailey and Sam etc. Huh Didn t catch that Each half page contains exactly 90 words When both stories are combined, the words add together for a total of 180 words per page, perhaps to symbolize the 180 degrees the reader must turn the book to read the opposite volume Also, with both pages open, the full word count is 360, essentially making a revolution 360 degrees with every open page. Didn t catch that either Butsomeone actually counted that shit Get it Only Revolutions Yeah The only reason I gave Only Revolutions one star instead of zero was because I was so elated after I turned the last page


  4. Amber Amber says:

    I really wanted to like this book as I LOVED House of Leaves, and further, I wanted to be the elitist one that could espouse, ohhhh, you didn t like it well, it was a difficult boooook butI just didn t like it I mean, I get the concept I get the format, I get the epic quality but I think the entire thing could have been done in half the length with twice the impact After a while the flip the book gimmick because almost unbearable as I would get distracted and forget in which I really wanted to like this book as I LOVED House of Leaves, and further, I wanted to be the elitist one that could espouse, ohhhh, you didn t like it well, it was a difficult boooook butI just didn t like it I mean, I get the concept I get the format, I get the epic quality but I think the entire thing could have been done in half the length with twice the impact After a while the flip the book gimmick because almost unbearable as I would get distracted and forget in which voice I was reading, not to mention that the people at the coffee shop must have thought I was a psycho I really like the events in the sidebar, but by the time I would read a full page of them, I would forget what was going on in the actual text All in all, just too much TOO MUCH I TELL YOU But maybe you ll like it, who knows Although I did hear a bit of the author reading from the text on the book s website, and it was really pleasing to hear So perhaps listening to it as a spoken poem in his own voice would be the preferable mode of ingestion


  5. Nathan "N.R." Gaddis Nathan "N.R." Gaddis says:

    Alright That s enough Page 113 from each end Were I to finish it, it would be merely pro forma So but anyway If you re even in the least bit curious about his book, this object of the book designers trade, probably not so much the novelists trade , then my own very personal suggestion would be that lieber to be curious about either


  6. Michael Michael says:

    I have learned that something can be structurally interesting and yet completely unappealing I read about 24 pages each direction before I realised that readingwould be a chore and not worth my time.


  7. secondwomn secondwomn says:

    reread may 14, 2011 1 1 07 the best book i ve read in a while is now out in paperback and as an audio book and mzd has announced his fall tour what better time to update my review of this gorgeous, personal, political work plus, who doesn t love a book that so prominently features american cars and asks to be read like a steering wheel only revolutions succeeds at a nigh impossible feat it is a modern epic poem it is a novel a love story a history a myth it is lewis carroll, jack ker reread may 14, 2011 1 1 07 the best book i ve read in a while is now out in paperback and as an audio book and mzd has announced his fall tour what better time to update my review of this gorgeous, personal, political work plus, who doesn t love a book that so prominently features american cars and asks to be read like a steering wheel only revolutions succeeds at a nigh impossible feat it is a modern epic poem it is a novel a love story a history a myth it is lewis carroll, jack kerouac, t.s eliot, vladimir nabokov, ralph ellison i am stunned, actually, that so few reviews compare danielewski s diction to carroll s the wordplay similarities might as well be wet fish smacking you in the face unsurprisingly, no shortage of joyce and pynchon comparisons with which i disagree yes, yes, the presentation of this story is unusual and reviewers seem to either love or loathe the mobius design like all the best writing, one reading will not suffice with that in mind, i jettisoned the historical documentation on the first trip through, referring only to the dates yes, there is a lot on the page but it doesn t have to be daunting sam and hailey s story is timeless and boundless it is a story as old as human civilization the narrative is free and uprooted and danielewski creatively honors that the work both relies upon and transcends its formatting i m looking forward to my second pass, to letting hailey and sam attach themselves to the ebb and flow of events and then cast themselves away the sidebars, and to some degree the typography, allow danielewski to be innovative with this doomed romance, to superimpose the story of america the characters are not everyman they are every possibility they are the unending potential of a nation that has steadfastly clung to the brink with these perpetual teens, danielewski paints a portrait of our national character of our haughty isolationism, our delusions of grandeur, our energetic whirl of betterfasternow, and our tentative relationship to everything outside ourselves


  8. Paul Paul says:

    Zero stars That s right Zero of them This is the worst book I ve ever read It was appallingly bad Again, it was the worst book I have ever read.Here s my longer review of it Writing by Numbers Mark Danielewski s Only RevolutionsThe age old love struck teenaged social pariah theme gets a new spin in Only Revolutions, Mark Z Danielewski s latest meretricious undertaking Told by two sixteen year olds, Hailey and Sam, the book begins from both ends, allowing the reader to flip it ov Zero stars That s right Zero of them This is the worst book I ve ever read It was appallingly bad Again, it was the worst book I have ever read.Here s my longer review of it Writing by Numbers Mark Danielewski s Only RevolutionsThe age old love struck teenaged social pariah theme gets a new spin in Only Revolutions, Mark Z Danielewski s latest meretricious undertaking Told by two sixteen year olds, Hailey and Sam, the book begins from both ends, allowing the reader to flip it over every eight pages, alternating between characters Danielewski claims to have conceived of the format after having separately written Sam s and Hailey s stories, though this is difficult to believe considering the two tales are hardly distinct Nor do their voices differ solipsistic Sam asserts, I am astounding, egocentric Hailey declares, I am astonishing, and aside from such slight dictional variances, the book essentially repeats itself each time it is flipped.A strong sense of rhythm and an ability to generate momentum are evident immediately as Sam and Hailey race about in a polynymic car, fornicating, eating HONEY and defecating, all the while extolling themselves to the point of absurdity The car, however, remains undescribed, their driving is aimless, the shitting grandiose and, to say the least, excessive Further, puerile phrases like chillin, no biggie, bouncing gazongas, and phat props, plus apocopic colloquialisms dis, sitch, and sesh are unengaging and detrimental to the notion of timelessness, a supposed major theme of the novel All seems consequently quite desultory, the constant book turning serving no purpose but to prohibit the momentum from really taking off And while a mollified pace eventually makes room for conflict, even this seems forced the two try desperately to get married, a social convention such outsiders would surely eschew Somehow they succeed, and later each holds the other in his her arms, all vitality inexplicably drained therefrom The entire narrative is devoid of any setting and context, unless one is inclined to read the so called history margins, a running compendium of cryptic non sequiturs obtained largely via fan submission to the author s web forum These exist as a separate text alongside the story proper, serving only, really, to distract Though they do, according to the author, evoke the look of a road Neat.While he may lack linguistic maturity, Danielewski excels in graphical flourish and gimmick Giant Ulyssesesque initials commence both characters halves, although, despite several critics claims, this is as Joycean as the novel gets Drop caps indicate the breaks at which the book is meant to be turned over these follow a rigid pattern of two, three, or five lines in height Black dots in page corners act as cinematic cigarette burns, harbingers of each expositionally insignificant five line cap Type shrinks from 20 to 12 points over the narrative course, a visual representation of Hailey and Sam s collective quietus On Sam s side, fauna is set in bold and fades puzzlingly to gray Hailey s repeats the trick with flora Page numbers revolve around each other in flip book fashion and the pronoun US is set always in narcissistic capitals, reading as an initialism like a note sung off key Though none of this adds anything to the reader s experience, Danielewski clearly believes an overdeveloped structure can supersede content Typefaces are numerous, have apposite names Life, Perpetua, Tempo, Myriad, Spectrum, Univers and are listed in order of arrival as if playing an active role Within the text though, proper characters clash with Sam and Hailey only visually, via their small capped monikers, and not through any sort of literal development Indeed the only memorable one of the bunch is THE CREEP, and only because his handle appears throughout in arbitrary purple ink.The paperback edition makes small improvements An appropriate, if obvious, road adorns each cover, replacing the marginally relevant pupils of the hardback Gone is the further incongruous case, a photocollage of dead birds, insects and plants, and while the eliminated double ribbon means the reader will have to supply her own bookmarks, these are easy enough to come by The cryptic endsheets, an apparent concordance set in reverse and arranged in an odd pattern of various overlapping ovals, remain only in part, suggesting dispensability Rest assured, though, fans each O and zero are still set in either green in Sam s portion or gold in Hailey s The text itself remains unchanged.Though specious, House of Leaves, Danielewski s experimental debut novel, showed ambition Here, however, he forgoes sentiment for numerical allusion, filling each of his 360 pages with 36 lines and exactly 180 words but not a trace of genuine emotion Perhaps he s hoping this paucity of substance will be missed for the constant book flipping Indeed, as Hailey claims 67.8% of the way through her half of the novel, If you can t fix it, give it a spin


  9. Stevie Stevie says:

    I dont mind working to read a book I loved House of Leaves and I dont mind being a bit lost in a book Umberto Eco s Focault s Pendulum was a truly difficult read that required work to read and research to fully comprehend But this one lost me WAY before it could hook me I don t mind the gimmick, really House of Leaves was gimmicky but it had a great story, an interesting story, a story that sucked you in and kept you reading, and turning, and looking, and puzzling Only Revol I dont mind working to read a book I loved House of Leaves and I dont mind being a bit lost in a book Umberto Eco s Focault s Pendulum was a truly difficult read that required work to read and research to fully comprehend But this one lost me WAY before it could hook me I don t mind the gimmick, really House of Leaves was gimmicky but it had a great story, an interesting story, a story that sucked you in and kept you reading, and turning, and looking, and puzzling Only Revolutions is beautiful to look at, its puzzle is well constructed and its fun to see how it all fits together 180 pages, 180 degrees etc but like someone else said thats the art of it It may be art but it still has to be a book After all the title of the art is Only Revolvtions A Novel Unfortunately it seems Danielewski forgot about that part because as far as story goes this was AWFUL The lack of narrative and story and aetherical characters makes the art puzzle frustrating instead of fun It is written in a kind of stream of consciousness prose. ugh I ll save most of you some time From the books wiki entry Only Revolutions is printed in such a way that both covers appear to be the front of the book The side with the green cover is the story as told by Sam, and the side with the gold cover is the story as told by Hailey Every page contains upside down text in the bottom margin, which is actually later pages of the opposite volume For example, the first page of Hailey s story contains the last several lines of Sam s story, apparently upside down When you reach that page while reading Sam s story, those lines will appear to be the only right side up text on the page.The first letter of each 8 page section is larger and bold when compared to the other letters When the reader puts the single letters together from Hailey s side they spell out Sam and Hailey and Sam and Hailey etc When read from Sam s side, they spell out Hailey and Sam and Hailey and Sam etc.Each half page contains exactly 90 words When both stories are combined, the words add together for a total of 180 words per page, perhaps to symbolize the 180 degrees the reader must turn the book to read the opposite volume original research Also, with both pages open, the full word count is 360, essentially making a revolution 360 degrees with every open page.The publisher recommends the reading of eight pages from one story, then the other, and so on.In addition, every page contains a sidebar with a date and a list of world events that happened between that date and the one which appears on the next page Dates in Sam s story run from Nov 22, 1863 to Nov 22, 1963, while dates in Hailey s story run from Nov 22, 1963 to Jan 19, 2063 This chronological sidebar, which offers a mosaic of 19th 21st Century historical quotations, becomes blank after Only Revolutions own publication date The diverging point between Sam s line and Hailey s line is set at the date of the John F Kennedy assassination, November 22, 1963.And with that you have read the most interesting thing about this book If you want to you could even print out the above quote and take yourself to a bookstore find the book and check out the art, hold it, turn it, look at it Then do yourself a favor and put it back on the shelf


  10. Matthew Matthew says:

    Oh, what a gimmick Two stories, sharing the page, meeting at page 180, and continuing on to page 360 where the ending of each story is also the beginning of the next If you follow the publisher s recommendation, you ll turn the book over every eight pages to weave the two stories together There s different colored ink, puns and riffs that would make Joyce jealous, and a list of dates in the sidebar that serves as a kind of Cliff s Notes of American History It s all very exciting and exhausti Oh, what a gimmick Two stories, sharing the page, meeting at page 180, and continuing on to page 360 where the ending of each story is also the beginning of the next If you follow the publisher s recommendation, you ll turn the book over every eight pages to weave the two stories together There s different colored ink, puns and riffs that would make Joyce jealous, and a list of dates in the sidebar that serves as a kind of Cliff s Notes of American History It s all very exciting and exhausting But is it anythingthan a cool idea Is there any story here Is it, like the jacket proclaims, a novel Can I answer yes and no Ostensibly a story about Sam and Hailey, two sixteen year old kids on a road trip through America, Only Revolutions is much too abstract to be read as simply a novel It s reallyof an epic poem there is a narrative thread, but it s obscured by Danielewski s kaleidoscopic style Sam and Hailey are larger than life, and often supernatural, characters who alternate between dealing with the minutiae of everyday life working, driving, going to the bathroom and dealing with larger issues destroying worlds and universes, reincarnation, etc I was both continually frustrated and occasionally amazed Only Revolutions may just be art for art s sake, but it s pretty art, and Danielewski s command of language is breathtaking at times I ll close my conflicted review with this At best, it s a brilliant literary experiment, something transendent that I just didn t fully grasp At worst, it s an over stylized and insultingly simple parable about nature and youth Because we re every happy trail, enjoining a World free of US to have fun Enjoy We re all anyone must absatively fail to destroy


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10 thoughts on “Only Revolutions

  1. Sean Sean says:

    Howdy there, O happy reader It is of the utmostand most sincerest importancethat you understandwhat kind of adventureyou will bestow upon your selfby undertaking and reapingthe novel that HOUSE OF LEAVES very own Mark Z Danielewski has sown.Sam and Hailey and Hailey and Samare two star crossed loversdriving across America andthrough time as their loveblossoms and grows and yetso do the country and timesthey invade most irreparably.It is the ambition and the braverythat makes this labyrinthian p Howdy there, O happy reader It is of the utmostand most sincerest importancethat you understandwhat kind of adventureyou will bestow upon your selfby undertaking and reapingthe novel that HOUSE OF LEAVES very own Mark Z Danielewski has sown.Sam and Hailey and Hailey and Samare two star crossed loversdriving across America andthrough time as their loveblossoms and grows and yetso do the country and timesthey invade most irreparably.It is the ambition and the braverythat makes this labyrinthian puzzle bookworth sticking with, but the narrative a concoction of prose and poetryTOGETHER makes for a storyso confusing and surreal so as to rendermost of the book inexplicable and incomprehensible.Worth gazing upon for severe interestdear reader, but be warned it is a book most troubling, andmostly impossible to follow.Final Grade C p u o o o q ssod so pu u qno so ooq s p u q nq p p s u s o uodn u z o q su d o u pu q dx u ooq o so pu o s os ns pu u sn uo os o s o s o od pu so d o uo o uo u nq u s o ooq zznd u u q s s q pu uo q s q d so p u s pu uno op os pu s o pu s osso q o s no pu sso u ps o p sso s o s pu pu pu s u os s s u p z u o ,s o sno ou u d pu u pun q s no uodn o s q no n u p o pu pu s pun no u od s u s so pu so n o s p dd o p o


  2. Adam Adam says:

    This book was like a cross between Da Vinci Code and something by Palahniuk And I mean that in the most insulting way possible.The summaries and reviews I read before getting the book had all focused on how it s the same story about two people told from each of their perspectives Therefore, I hoped going in that it would have some interesting and thought provoking juxtapositions.There were no interesting juxtapositions When reading one character s take on a situation, the question was not in This book was like a cross between Da Vinci Code and something by Palahniuk And I mean that in the most insulting way possible.The summaries and reviews I read before getting the book had all focused on how it s the same story about two people told from each of their perspectives Therefore, I hoped going in that it would have some interesting and thought provoking juxtapositions.There were no interesting juxtapositions When reading one character s take on a situation, the question was not in what subtle way would the other character s view of it differ, but rather in what way would the other character s view be the exact opposite If he said that he drove the car with great skill, would she say he drove poorly, or would she say that SHE drove the car with great skill To give an idea of the degree to which this book sucked, here s the summary of a typical scenario from each character s perspective And as much as you may think that I m making this up because you don t believe that something this bad could possibly have been published, let me assure you that I am not Let me repeat you may find this scene summary to be offensive It is Danielewski s scene, straight out of the book, not embellished, not made up He says he has a big penis, she has small breasts, he satisfied her sexually and ejaculated massive quantities of come all over her, and then he drove the car with great skill, and she got car sick.She says he has a small penis, she has large breasts, he performed poorly sexually and ejaculated a tiny amount of come on the ground next to her, and then she drove the car with great skill, and he got car sick.It was all so juvenile and formulaic that I had a hard time believing it was really happening and a much harder time believing that anyone could get throughthan a few pages of this without dismissing it as total shit How could any review of this book not trash it completely I suffered through to the end of the book just so that I could assure myself that it did not, in fact, get better at some point It did not This book was horrible.I gave this book a chance for the same reasons that I gave House of Leaves a chance mostly that they seemed unique, and I like unique books and writing styles Both books turned out to be without substance and poorly written by someone who appears to have the maturity of a teenager.I m done with Danielewski He s a hack


  3. Michelle Michelle says:

    This review has been hidden because it contains spoilers To view it, click here For every bit of love I felt for Danielewski s House of Leaves, which was quite a bit, I felt an equal amount of dislike for this one For me this book embodies a word I have recently seen thrown around Goodreads Gimmicky It was gimmicky with a capital G Gimmicky with all caps GIMMICKY It was just bad, man Bad, bad, bad The book tells the story of Sam and Hailey, eternal sixteen year old road tripping Romeo and Juliet types who drive across country and through history Their story is told For every bit of love I felt for Danielewski s House of Leaves, which was quite a bit, I felt an equal amount of dislike for this one For me this book embodies a word I have recently seen thrown around Goodreads Gimmicky It was gimmicky with a capital G Gimmicky with all caps GIMMICKY It was just bad, man Bad, bad, bad The book tells the story of Sam and Hailey, eternal sixteen year old road tripping Romeo and Juliet types who drive across country and through history Their story is told by each of them, and is printed on two sides so that each cover of the book could be either the front or back cover One side is the story told in Sam s point of view, and if you flip the book upside down and to what would be the back cover, you can read it from Hailey s point of view I guess the layout of the book was a unique idea An interesting concept The problem was that Sam and Hailey s story wasn t interesting to read At all The dreamy, often misspelled kiddie speak which they used reminded me a little bit of Francesca Lia Block s books, but she does it oh so much better.I almost never do this, but after I read the book I read its Wikipedia page I don t know what I was looking for exactly Maybe I was looking for a special meaning that I must have missed because surely it couldn t have been that bad, right Wrong Incidentally, the most interesting things about the book were found on its Wiki page, which leads me to believe that either the author himself or a huge fan must have written it But, nothing was enough to sway my opinion or call myself a dumbass for missing some earth shattering motif that another smarter reader would have picked up on The information below is quoted directly from Wikipedia The first letter of each 8 page section is larger and bold when compared to the other letters When the reader puts the single letters together from Hailey s side they spell out Sam and Hailey and Sam and Hailey etc When read from Sam s side, they spell out Hailey and Sam and Hailey and Sam etc. Huh Didn t catch that Each half page contains exactly 90 words When both stories are combined, the words add together for a total of 180 words per page, perhaps to symbolize the 180 degrees the reader must turn the book to read the opposite volume Also, with both pages open, the full word count is 360, essentially making a revolution 360 degrees with every open page. Didn t catch that either Butsomeone actually counted that shit Get it Only Revolutions Yeah The only reason I gave Only Revolutions one star instead of zero was because I was so elated after I turned the last page


  4. Amber Amber says:

    I really wanted to like this book as I LOVED House of Leaves, and further, I wanted to be the elitist one that could espouse, ohhhh, you didn t like it well, it was a difficult boooook butI just didn t like it I mean, I get the concept I get the format, I get the epic quality but I think the entire thing could have been done in half the length with twice the impact After a while the flip the book gimmick because almost unbearable as I would get distracted and forget in which I really wanted to like this book as I LOVED House of Leaves, and further, I wanted to be the elitist one that could espouse, ohhhh, you didn t like it well, it was a difficult boooook butI just didn t like it I mean, I get the concept I get the format, I get the epic quality but I think the entire thing could have been done in half the length with twice the impact After a while the flip the book gimmick because almost unbearable as I would get distracted and forget in which voice I was reading, not to mention that the people at the coffee shop must have thought I was a psycho I really like the events in the sidebar, but by the time I would read a full page of them, I would forget what was going on in the actual text All in all, just too much TOO MUCH I TELL YOU But maybe you ll like it, who knows Although I did hear a bit of the author reading from the text on the book s website, and it was really pleasing to hear So perhaps listening to it as a spoken poem in his own voice would be the preferable mode of ingestion


  5. Nathan "N.R." Gaddis Nathan "N.R." Gaddis says:

    Alright That s enough Page 113 from each end Were I to finish it, it would be merely pro forma So but anyway If you re even in the least bit curious about his book, this object of the book designers trade, probably not so much the novelists trade , then my own very personal suggestion would be that lieber to be curious about either


  6. Michael Michael says:

    I have learned that something can be structurally interesting and yet completely unappealing I read about 24 pages each direction before I realised that readingwould be a chore and not worth my time.


  7. secondwomn secondwomn says:

    reread may 14, 2011 1 1 07 the best book i ve read in a while is now out in paperback and as an audio book and mzd has announced his fall tour what better time to update my review of this gorgeous, personal, political work plus, who doesn t love a book that so prominently features american cars and asks to be read like a steering wheel only revolutions succeeds at a nigh impossible feat it is a modern epic poem it is a novel a love story a history a myth it is lewis carroll, jack ker reread may 14, 2011 1 1 07 the best book i ve read in a while is now out in paperback and as an audio book and mzd has announced his fall tour what better time to update my review of this gorgeous, personal, political work plus, who doesn t love a book that so prominently features american cars and asks to be read like a steering wheel only revolutions succeeds at a nigh impossible feat it is a modern epic poem it is a novel a love story a history a myth it is lewis carroll, jack kerouac, t.s eliot, vladimir nabokov, ralph ellison i am stunned, actually, that so few reviews compare danielewski s diction to carroll s the wordplay similarities might as well be wet fish smacking you in the face unsurprisingly, no shortage of joyce and pynchon comparisons with which i disagree yes, yes, the presentation of this story is unusual and reviewers seem to either love or loathe the mobius design like all the best writing, one reading will not suffice with that in mind, i jettisoned the historical documentation on the first trip through, referring only to the dates yes, there is a lot on the page but it doesn t have to be daunting sam and hailey s story is timeless and boundless it is a story as old as human civilization the narrative is free and uprooted and danielewski creatively honors that the work both relies upon and transcends its formatting i m looking forward to my second pass, to letting hailey and sam attach themselves to the ebb and flow of events and then cast themselves away the sidebars, and to some degree the typography, allow danielewski to be innovative with this doomed romance, to superimpose the story of america the characters are not everyman they are every possibility they are the unending potential of a nation that has steadfastly clung to the brink with these perpetual teens, danielewski paints a portrait of our national character of our haughty isolationism, our delusions of grandeur, our energetic whirl of betterfasternow, and our tentative relationship to everything outside ourselves


  8. Paul Paul says:

    Zero stars That s right Zero of them This is the worst book I ve ever read It was appallingly bad Again, it was the worst book I have ever read.Here s my longer review of it Writing by Numbers Mark Danielewski s Only RevolutionsThe age old love struck teenaged social pariah theme gets a new spin in Only Revolutions, Mark Z Danielewski s latest meretricious undertaking Told by two sixteen year olds, Hailey and Sam, the book begins from both ends, allowing the reader to flip it ov Zero stars That s right Zero of them This is the worst book I ve ever read It was appallingly bad Again, it was the worst book I have ever read.Here s my longer review of it Writing by Numbers Mark Danielewski s Only RevolutionsThe age old love struck teenaged social pariah theme gets a new spin in Only Revolutions, Mark Z Danielewski s latest meretricious undertaking Told by two sixteen year olds, Hailey and Sam, the book begins from both ends, allowing the reader to flip it over every eight pages, alternating between characters Danielewski claims to have conceived of the format after having separately written Sam s and Hailey s stories, though this is difficult to believe considering the two tales are hardly distinct Nor do their voices differ solipsistic Sam asserts, I am astounding, egocentric Hailey declares, I am astonishing, and aside from such slight dictional variances, the book essentially repeats itself each time it is flipped.A strong sense of rhythm and an ability to generate momentum are evident immediately as Sam and Hailey race about in a polynymic car, fornicating, eating HONEY and defecating, all the while extolling themselves to the point of absurdity The car, however, remains undescribed, their driving is aimless, the shitting grandiose and, to say the least, excessive Further, puerile phrases like chillin, no biggie, bouncing gazongas, and phat props, plus apocopic colloquialisms dis, sitch, and sesh are unengaging and detrimental to the notion of timelessness, a supposed major theme of the novel All seems consequently quite desultory, the constant book turning serving no purpose but to prohibit the momentum from really taking off And while a mollified pace eventually makes room for conflict, even this seems forced the two try desperately to get married, a social convention such outsiders would surely eschew Somehow they succeed, and later each holds the other in his her arms, all vitality inexplicably drained therefrom The entire narrative is devoid of any setting and context, unless one is inclined to read the so called history margins, a running compendium of cryptic non sequiturs obtained largely via fan submission to the author s web forum These exist as a separate text alongside the story proper, serving only, really, to distract Though they do, according to the author, evoke the look of a road Neat.While he may lack linguistic maturity, Danielewski excels in graphical flourish and gimmick Giant Ulyssesesque initials commence both characters halves, although, despite several critics claims, this is as Joycean as the novel gets Drop caps indicate the breaks at which the book is meant to be turned over these follow a rigid pattern of two, three, or five lines in height Black dots in page corners act as cinematic cigarette burns, harbingers of each expositionally insignificant five line cap Type shrinks from 20 to 12 points over the narrative course, a visual representation of Hailey and Sam s collective quietus On Sam s side, fauna is set in bold and fades puzzlingly to gray Hailey s repeats the trick with flora Page numbers revolve around each other in flip book fashion and the pronoun US is set always in narcissistic capitals, reading as an initialism like a note sung off key Though none of this adds anything to the reader s experience, Danielewski clearly believes an overdeveloped structure can supersede content Typefaces are numerous, have apposite names Life, Perpetua, Tempo, Myriad, Spectrum, Univers and are listed in order of arrival as if playing an active role Within the text though, proper characters clash with Sam and Hailey only visually, via their small capped monikers, and not through any sort of literal development Indeed the only memorable one of the bunch is THE CREEP, and only because his handle appears throughout in arbitrary purple ink.The paperback edition makes small improvements An appropriate, if obvious, road adorns each cover, replacing the marginally relevant pupils of the hardback Gone is the further incongruous case, a photocollage of dead birds, insects and plants, and while the eliminated double ribbon means the reader will have to supply her own bookmarks, these are easy enough to come by The cryptic endsheets, an apparent concordance set in reverse and arranged in an odd pattern of various overlapping ovals, remain only in part, suggesting dispensability Rest assured, though, fans each O and zero are still set in either green in Sam s portion or gold in Hailey s The text itself remains unchanged.Though specious, House of Leaves, Danielewski s experimental debut novel, showed ambition Here, however, he forgoes sentiment for numerical allusion, filling each of his 360 pages with 36 lines and exactly 180 words but not a trace of genuine emotion Perhaps he s hoping this paucity of substance will be missed for the constant book flipping Indeed, as Hailey claims 67.8% of the way through her half of the novel, If you can t fix it, give it a spin


  9. Stevie Stevie says:

    I dont mind working to read a book I loved House of Leaves and I dont mind being a bit lost in a book Umberto Eco s Focault s Pendulum was a truly difficult read that required work to read and research to fully comprehend But this one lost me WAY before it could hook me I don t mind the gimmick, really House of Leaves was gimmicky but it had a great story, an interesting story, a story that sucked you in and kept you reading, and turning, and looking, and puzzling Only Revol I dont mind working to read a book I loved House of Leaves and I dont mind being a bit lost in a book Umberto Eco s Focault s Pendulum was a truly difficult read that required work to read and research to fully comprehend But this one lost me WAY before it could hook me I don t mind the gimmick, really House of Leaves was gimmicky but it had a great story, an interesting story, a story that sucked you in and kept you reading, and turning, and looking, and puzzling Only Revolutions is beautiful to look at, its puzzle is well constructed and its fun to see how it all fits together 180 pages, 180 degrees etc but like someone else said thats the art of it It may be art but it still has to be a book After all the title of the art is Only Revolvtions A Novel Unfortunately it seems Danielewski forgot about that part because as far as story goes this was AWFUL The lack of narrative and story and aetherical characters makes the art puzzle frustrating instead of fun It is written in a kind of stream of consciousness prose. ugh I ll save most of you some time From the books wiki entry Only Revolutions is printed in such a way that both covers appear to be the front of the book The side with the green cover is the story as told by Sam, and the side with the gold cover is the story as told by Hailey Every page contains upside down text in the bottom margin, which is actually later pages of the opposite volume For example, the first page of Hailey s story contains the last several lines of Sam s story, apparently upside down When you reach that page while reading Sam s story, those lines will appear to be the only right side up text on the page.The first letter of each 8 page section is larger and bold when compared to the other letters When the reader puts the single letters together from Hailey s side they spell out Sam and Hailey and Sam and Hailey etc When read from Sam s side, they spell out Hailey and Sam and Hailey and Sam etc.Each half page contains exactly 90 words When both stories are combined, the words add together for a total of 180 words per page, perhaps to symbolize the 180 degrees the reader must turn the book to read the opposite volume original research Also, with both pages open, the full word count is 360, essentially making a revolution 360 degrees with every open page.The publisher recommends the reading of eight pages from one story, then the other, and so on.In addition, every page contains a sidebar with a date and a list of world events that happened between that date and the one which appears on the next page Dates in Sam s story run from Nov 22, 1863 to Nov 22, 1963, while dates in Hailey s story run from Nov 22, 1963 to Jan 19, 2063 This chronological sidebar, which offers a mosaic of 19th 21st Century historical quotations, becomes blank after Only Revolutions own publication date The diverging point between Sam s line and Hailey s line is set at the date of the John F Kennedy assassination, November 22, 1963.And with that you have read the most interesting thing about this book If you want to you could even print out the above quote and take yourself to a bookstore find the book and check out the art, hold it, turn it, look at it Then do yourself a favor and put it back on the shelf


  10. Matthew Matthew says:

    Oh, what a gimmick Two stories, sharing the page, meeting at page 180, and continuing on to page 360 where the ending of each story is also the beginning of the next If you follow the publisher s recommendation, you ll turn the book over every eight pages to weave the two stories together There s different colored ink, puns and riffs that would make Joyce jealous, and a list of dates in the sidebar that serves as a kind of Cliff s Notes of American History It s all very exciting and exhausti Oh, what a gimmick Two stories, sharing the page, meeting at page 180, and continuing on to page 360 where the ending of each story is also the beginning of the next If you follow the publisher s recommendation, you ll turn the book over every eight pages to weave the two stories together There s different colored ink, puns and riffs that would make Joyce jealous, and a list of dates in the sidebar that serves as a kind of Cliff s Notes of American History It s all very exciting and exhausting But is it anythingthan a cool idea Is there any story here Is it, like the jacket proclaims, a novel Can I answer yes and no Ostensibly a story about Sam and Hailey, two sixteen year old kids on a road trip through America, Only Revolutions is much too abstract to be read as simply a novel It s reallyof an epic poem there is a narrative thread, but it s obscured by Danielewski s kaleidoscopic style Sam and Hailey are larger than life, and often supernatural, characters who alternate between dealing with the minutiae of everyday life working, driving, going to the bathroom and dealing with larger issues destroying worlds and universes, reincarnation, etc I was both continually frustrated and occasionally amazed Only Revolutions may just be art for art s sake, but it s pretty art, and Danielewski s command of language is breathtaking at times I ll close my conflicted review with this At best, it s a brilliant literary experiment, something transendent that I just didn t fully grasp At worst, it s an over stylized and insultingly simple parable about nature and youth Because we re every happy trail, enjoining a World free of US to have fun Enjoy We re all anyone must absatively fail to destroy


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