Illustration by Yelena Bryksenova
I got done reading Ernest Hemingway's The Old Man and the Sea and, giddy (loved it, loved it, loved it, so much love in it and so much life and beauty), went to grab the book next on my reading list, Natalie Young's Season to Taste which I found through an article, can't remember which now, but as I clicked on it on my Goodreads to-read list to mark it as currently-reading, I couldn't help but to see the overall rating of 2.54 stars, and right away I felt my stomach whoosh down to my bowels and think, "Oh, shit, will it be a waste of my time?" So I started fighting it, this feeling, this downer. "No, I thought, shut up shut up shut up, I don't care that the rating is low, it's the book about a woman killing her husband and cooking him and eating him, for Christ's sake, it's my kind of book!" But the damage was done. I started wondering why, and I couldn't help but glance at a few reviews, and with my spirits low I started reading it.
The book grabbed me on the third page—I thought the first 2 pages could be successfully chopped off—with the lines: "Jacob had been dead three days. Now he was in the freezer in sixteen bits. Lizzie would start cooking him this afternoon." BAM! Shivers, right? Yes, shivers. I read on. The killing and the severing of the parts and the bits about the cooking and the eating got me all riled up. "This is brilliantly sick," I thought, "God, I need to learn how to write crisply like that when I write Janna and have her chop off rapist's dicks and have them bleed to death," then at about page 50 I started getting bored, and then I started wondering why I was getting bored. [read on]