Monday, June 06, 2005


I had to crank up my reading speed this weekend and finish the long, and pretty good but not totally awesome The Road to Wellville by T. Coraghessan Boyle, as I have a borrowed book to read as well as my giant pile of new books that I want to get started on.

This book was made into a movie with Anthony Hopkins, Bridget Fonda, Matthew Broderick and John Cusack, all of whom I like. I am pretty sure I saw it and also pretty sure it didn't leave that much of an impression on me. Kind of like the book.

This is a nice satire, but cold and distant (as satires often are). There isn't a character to really grab onto, although many of them do have their moments. The book has some funny bits, including a lot of exposing and inspecting of John Harvey Kellogg, inventor of peanut butter, corn flakes and granola; a vehement vegetarian who was totally against sex and really really into enemas.

I like the historical stuff in the book -- all the patent medicines and special diets that intrigued the rich around the turn of the century. And, if you have read the book or seen the movie (or really, even if you haven't), there is a wonderful page up on the Willard Library site with pictures from Kellogg's Battle Creek Sanitarium. No enema pictures, though.

So, this one is going into my pile of books to sell. The first step in my new plan to not keep books that I didn't really like and that I don't think I'll read again. And it's pretty thick -- I bet I could get three of my new pulpy novels into its space on the bookshelf...

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