I have gotten a few comments and emails from the people who are still out there reading and it seems that I am not the only one who needs some time to catch up. So I’m not posting any new pages this week (and the schedule will pick up again next week). Also remember that you can always post your thoughts on anything you’ve read in the book, these bullet points are just meant to get us talking.

To go back a little bit, from pages 312-317 we learn a lot about Mario, the middle of the Incandenza boys. He is severely deformed, but of the characters in the novel seems to be the one with the best heart. So to bring some different threads together here are some things to think about:

  • As a result of his deformity, Mario is described as being “pain-resistant” in a novel that is filled with all sorts of pain, both physical and psychic. What does this tell us about Mario’s place in the novel?
  • Madame Psychosis talks a lot about the deformed, and sees herself as being so beautiful that she hides her face behind a veil. Mario is an avid listener of her radio show–any thoughts about what we are to make of these two?
  • Mario is also Hal and Orin’s brother, and while his relationship with Orin is almost non-existent, his relationship with Hal is complicated. Mario is the older brother, but Hal is the one taking care of him. What do you have to say about this relationship?
  • And finally, Mario is in some ways following his father JOI by continuing to be interested in film making. What can we learn about Mario through his films (Tennis and the Feral Prodigy pgs 172-176) ? Is Mario like us and just an audience to the book’s events, looking at everything through a particular lens?

Hope everyone is enjoying the reading. Keep posting (even if it’s just to say you’re still reading) and I look forward to seeing the different thoughts and experiences reading. Have a great week!

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