Tuesday, 11 November 2014

All My Friends are Superheroes by Andrew Kaufman (3/5)

First published: 1999
Page count: 120

The back says: All Tom's friends really are superheroes.

There's the Ear, the Spooner, the Impossible Man. Tom even married a superhero, the Perfectionist. But at their wedding, the Perfectionist was hypnotized (by ex-boyfriend Hypno, of course) to believe that Tom is invisible. Nothing he does can make her see him. Six months later, she's sure that Tom has abandoned her.

So she's moving to Vancouver. She'll use her superpower to make Vancouver perfect and leave all the heartbreak in Toronto. With no idea Tom's beside her, she boards an airplane in Toronto. Tom has until the wheels touch the ground in Vancouver to convince her he's visible, or he loses her forever.


I say: I first came across Kaufman when I read and adored The Tiny Wife, and I have been meaning to read more of his works for quite some time, which is probably why I found myself a tad disappointed with this.

The whole premise of the novella is that all Tom’s friends are superheroes – and I understand what Kaufman did with that – but I didn’t really like it. I don’t have a particular reason for not liking it other than it feeling a bit contrived.

It just wasn’t the wonderful story I was hoping for.

I don’t really have anything to say about either the prose or the story itself; I just read it to read it, which is sad because every now and then a little nugget of profundity would slip through my hardened exterior and make me smile.

3/5 because it was a short and worth the read (my expectations were just too high).

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