“Artful,” by Ali Smith

artful“We do treat books surprisingly lightly in contemporary culture.  We’d never expect to understand a piece of music in one listen, but we tend to believe we’ve read a book after reading it just once.”

I liked this book a lot as I read it.  It sort of defied categorization.  Not quite fiction, not quite non-.  Lots of quotes, at times bordering on being a “quote dump,” but not in a bad way.  I enjoyed it.  A lot of this new style of non-fiction writing seems to fall into this category.

The Goodreads synopsis says it well: “Artful is a book about the things art can do, the things art is full of, and the quicksilver nature of all artfulness.”  That’s what intrigued me initially about the book; this “artful” concept.  An almost philosophical inquiry, which happen to be my very favorite types of inquiries.

That and the cover art.  You can’t judge a book by its cover, they say, but this one really grabbed me.  I mean, check it out!

Alain de Botton said of Ali Smith: “She’s a genius, genuinely modern in the heroic, glorious sense.”  She is modern.  Fresh.  Untired.  Read this if you’re looking to mix things up.  Try something new.

As it said on the book jacket: “A book that refuses to be tied down to either fiction or the essay form.”  If that entices you, read Smith’s Artful.  You won’t regret it.

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