Friday Fiction: Scotland by Alex Snider

Good news, everyone! I'm in Edinburgh! In honour of my trip, I've come up with four of my favourite Scottish reads (and one "I can't remember but like any opportunity to call Bret Easton Ellis a hack") so that you can read them too and then it will be like we're all together in Scotland, frolicking through the moors.

The Testament of Gideon Mack by James Robertson -- It is actually really hard to put into words how amazing this novel is. Rebekah, Derek and Kevin (incidentally, our BFFs in Edinburgh) and I read it and four years on we're all still having dreams about this one. About a minister who doesn't believe in God but meets the devil. Could also be found under books about Atheism, unreliable narrators and books that will haunt you for-ev-er, for-ev-er, for-ev-er, FOR-EV-ER.

The Prime of Miss Jean Brodie by Murial Sparks -- I love this book. I hate that I don't have nearly enough novels by women on these lists but shit yo, the ones I do list are so amazing! Sparks is so measured and witty and she manages to do that annoying thing, 'the twist ending', while not making it annoying because the ride was so worth it.

Young Adam by Alexander Trocchi -- You know, I always have trouble spelling Alexander. I always type it too quickly and wind up with Alexandre. It's probably because I am so used to typing Alexandra, which you may have already guessed is my name. I've always felt that Alexandra implies that I'm super elegant and sophisticated with really long honey-brown hair and lots of dainty silver jewelry whereas I'm actually the kind of person who says "that dog won't hunt" and sometimes goes months without brushing my hair (which I cut myself, thank you very much). Anyway, I digress... Alexander (haha, did it again!) Trocchi was one of the beats for those who are into that sort of thing; the rest of you don't hold it against him. Fun for those who are into drugged out hazes; and well-written descent into madness for those who aren't into drugged out hazes.

Under the Skin by Michel Faber -- A great one for the vegetarians out there. Damn, I should've said spoiler alert first... Oh well, read it anyway if not just because of the basic synopsis: Isserley drives through Scotland, picking up hitch-hikers asking them questions so as to glean information on whether or not anyone would miss them... Spooky scary!

Porno by Irvine Welsh -- I read this seven years ago when I was just a kid and I'm not entirely sure if it would hold up, particularly to my feminist ideologies. But, I am fairly sure that Welsh would hold up a helluva lot better than Chuck "Look at me I'm soooooo shocking!" Palahniuk or that ridiculous hack, Bret Easton Ellis.

Happy Friday, everyone! I hope you are all as surrounded by loved ones and hilarious banter as I am right now!

Alex Snider is a Toronto-based writer, a Contributing Editor for the Little Red Umbrella and the co-creator of the Once Again, To Zelda blog, which is where a version of this post originally appeared. You can read the rest of her posts here.


Post a Comment