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"Thinking of Suicide"
The narrator of King Dork, Tom Henderson, has a band and is trying to figure out how to play his guitar and how to write songs. He writes several songs through the course of the book, and I thought it might be fun actually to come up with the songs rather than just alluding to them in the text. The songs were written by me "as Tom Henderson," know what I mean? "Thinking of Suicide" is one of the first complete songs Tom writes. The title comes from an informational pamphlet for troubled teens handed out by the school. He likes the drawing of the girl on the cover. "This would make a pretty good song," he thinks: "all I had to do was give the girl a name and feel sorry for myself while pretending to be her. And figure out some lyrics and chords and stuff." This song, which incidentally ends up echoing through and complicating his family life, his social life, and his psychological life, is the result.
"I Wanna Ramone You"
This one is a little hard to "set up," but I'll give it a shot. There are three strands all tangled up in this song. Strand A: Tom is doing research on the life and times of his mysteriously deceased father, and part of that involves poring over ancient texts like the Bible and The Catcher in the Rye. It's a long story, but in the course of this research he inadvertently learns that the French verb ramoner (which literally means "to scrub out a chimney") can be used as a sexual metaphor. As a rock and roller, he of course immediately thinks of the Ramones, and, voilà, a new English euphemism for sex is born - I ramone, you ramone, he, she or it ramones... (This is useful to him, as it gives him a much cooler metaphor for sex than any of the other ones available; and it proved useful to the author, i.e., me, as well, for pretty much the same reason.) Strand B: Tom is taking Advanced French, which he describes as "a form of the French language in which only the present tense is used. Primarily employed for telling time and for describing the activities of this one guy named Jean and this other guy named Claude." So in writing his song about the timeless power of love, he decides to include some sophisticated, romantic French phrases in the lyrics. Strand C: He has this pretty big crush on a girl from a neighboring town, so he writes a song about her. (As one does in those situations.) "I Wanna Ramone You" is the result, one of his first full-on love songs.
Read it again after 5 years now that a sequel just came out. Enjoyable YA romp and love the devil-head vocabulary.Published 3 months ago by David W. Moberly
This book didn't grab me initially as I found the narrator a bit too misanthropic and condescending at first. Read morePublished 3 months ago by Mike Slaughter
I feel weird sometimes that I read so much "Young Adult" literature at my not-so-young age! But they are often so funny and smart and poignant, that it's hard not to get... Read morePublished 4 months ago by RunSueRun
After all the great reviews I had high hopes. Sadly, this story was not funny at all. It is a fairly true to life telling of high school from the point of view of a young man,... Read morePublished 4 months ago by A. Hill
"King Dork" is a book written for boys. The female characters seem to come from a contemptuous place in the author's head, which makes it read sort of like a John Greene... Read morePublished 4 months ago by Ben
Alright Alright I do get all the strong feminist reactions to this book but really...who cares? Literature and art doesn't have to be POLITICALLY CORRECT. Read morePublished 5 months ago by Remi Zagari
I recieved an excerpt of this book from Netgalley in return of an honest review
Wauw. Okay, I was really pleasently surprised of how good this little excerpt turned out... Read more