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Whatever Gets You Through the Night - Kepler's Staff Review
I’ve never read Andrei Codrescu before, but this book promises to be wonderful. The subject itself, “The Arabian Nights” or, alternatively, “The 1001 Nights” or “The 1000 Nights and 1 Night” (my favorite), is deservedly wonderful in its own right, thus my interest in Codrescu’s book. In just the first several pages of this work, Codrescu shows great ingenuity, bringing scientist and writer Carl Djerassi, poet Alice Notley, and suicide bombers into his unique take on the framework for “The 1001 Nights” rather than the tales themselves.
If you don’t like footnotes, you will not like this book, but you will be missing so, so much. These are the fun kinds of footnotes, the explanatory, discursive, tangential types that can deepen one’s understanding and appreciation of a work, rather that the more necessary kind of footnotes where only title and page number of a referenced work is cited. It might be considered a stretch to suggest that many of these footnotes are like little tales, little stories within the larger story that Codrescu is telling. If it is, so be it; I couldn’t resist, as it seems apropos to me. --Mike C.
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Published: Princeton University Press - May 15th, 2011