Thursday, May 9, 2013

Living Alone Will Never Be The Same

The Visible Man by Chuck Klosterman

Vicky is a therapist. Her regular clients are the kinds that come in to talk about themselves, their marriages, depression, and whatnot. But one day Vicky gets a phone call that changes everything. A client, who is referred to as Y­­­___ tells her that he has invented a way to disguise himself to be unseen, for all intents and purposes, invisible. So starts a series of stories and conversations between Y­­___ and Vicky about the people he watches. Y___ says that he is a scientist and his sole purpose in inventing the suit was to observe individuals when they thought they were completely alone. He hides in people’s homes in order to do this. This man is obviously brilliant, but disturbed and Vicky finds herself toeing the line between complete absorption/personal interest and her duty as a therapist.

The Visible Man by Chuck Klosterman is a book that leaves you thinking. What was the point of Y___’s use of therapy? What are his ulterior motives? Who is he? The book is written as a transcription of the dialogue between Vicky and Y___ with some conversations filled in by Vicky’s memory and some add-ons from Vicky. Vicky claims that the story was too extraordinary not to publish and in her belief, Y___ had the sessions taped for exactly that reason.

Klosterman is an amazing writer. This is a book awash with intellectual stimuli, questions, and provocation. It creeps beneath the surface just as Y___ creeps into people’s lives. It left me a little uneasy because the idea of someone watching what I do on my own without my knowledge is disturbing. It made me think about my super-secret single behavior (yeah that’s right we all have them) and also about when we show our true selves.

I highly suggest this title if you’re ready for a short, adult book. If you like something that has dark humor and compels you to continue on, I’d say give this one a read. Certainly a book that changed my outlook on “being alone”.

Read Alikes!

~Kristin M. 

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