The Finch Formerly Known As Gold

13 February 2006

Beyond Kugelmass

Kugelmass, you'll remember, appears in a 1977 Woody Allen short story; his life, especially his married life, seems drab and unappealing, and magician friend the Great Persky contrives to have him inserted into Flaubert's novel Madame Bovary, right between Emma Bovary's affairs with Leon and Rodolphe.

Last fall, I asked Kugelmass wannabes into which books of fiction they'd like to find themselves, with interesting results.

Of course, this concept can be taken in many different directions. Perhaps motivated by a vision of Atticus Finch, a fictional character I too would have liked to meet, Jennifer poses a similar question:

If you could suddenly find out that one work of fiction was actually true, what book would you hope it would be? And why?

My immediate thought was Heinlein's Time Enough for Love, but it occurred to me that Lazarus Long himself might well chastise me for the selection, simply because I was being presumptuous, something Long likely wouldn't countenance.

So I'll give it a little more thought, and I'll throw the question open to you.

Posted at 9:15 AM to Almost Yogurt

Probably either "Dandelion Wine" or "Something Wicked This Way Comes" both by Bradbury.

Raised in Illinois, I identified so much with Dandelion Wine, even though it was from a different era. Magical things happened because people believed not only in themselves, but in each other.

Something Wicked was the battle of pure timeless evil against pure unknowing innocence. Don't watch the movie (even though it was written by Bradbury) Read the book, really really READ the book. If Something Wicked were actually true it would be the triumph of young boys over an evil that had been festering throughout time. It would mean they had overcome temptation and destroyed that evil, saved the town, saved their father and each other. It is really a fantastic story that should be true.

Posted by: Dwayne "the canoe guy" at 10:31 AM on 13 February 2006

I've not gotten one quality response to my own question, save, perhaps, Narnia. I suspect overthinking is the cause. Speaking for myself, there are at least dozens of titles I could list, complete with explanations why.

Posted by: Jennifer at 5:28 PM on 13 February 2006

I'd have to admit this one by Niven & Pournelle would be high on my list.

Posted by: McGehee at 9:39 AM on 14 February 2006