Book Review: Eeeee Eee Eeee

Published February 24, 2013 by pipsqueak
eeeee eee eeee

an average thing about this book is that talking bears can teleport in it

Eeeee Eee Eeee by Tao Lin is really, really, really postmodern.

I’m not really sure how to describe it accurately, so I’ll just tell you some things about it. There’s talking animals – bears, dolphins, moose, hamsters – and talking humans who deliver pizza. The bears like to cover people’s heads with blankets. Almost all of the characters are struggling with crushing ennui and depression, yet the text is far from lethargic. The text crackles and spouts bizarre insights on every page. The pages are punctuated by sentences that I reread several times for their brilliant bizarreness. For an example, I read this one out loud to several of my friends, my sister, and my mom:

Andrew had a flat tire once and the martial arts champion drove out to help, late at night. He seemed very nice and a little shy, but also like if he wanted he could walk quietly through a crowd with a neutral facial expression breaking people’s bones.

Eeeee Eee Eeee is surreal, sure, but it also smacks of realness. It’s a book about being a human in the 21st century, where disconnection and isolation are pretty much normal.

He didn’t want to elaborate. It would take forever to elaborate. Someone would eventually realize that the conversation was just a matter of semantics. Was there even a point to talking? … Not wanting to elaborate, that was a symptom of something – something bad. Andrew didn’t want to think about it.  Maybe he should take antidepressant medicine.

Tao Lin’s writing style mimicks the infinitely-distractible, faster-than-the-speed-of-starbucks-wifi mindset of Kids These Days. He also manages to bring up some pretty pointed observations about humanity without moralizing in any way. His book is about lonely and depressed people and the lonely and depressed teleporting bears/moose that interact with/kidnap/punch them.

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