Essence of “Blonde” and the essence of “Brunette”; a book that’s mad with imagination. Or is it?

Apparently few like the new movie ‘Blonde’ on Netflix, but I dare anyone to read the book. It’s mad with imagination and Marilyn’s life was mad and tragic, as we all know.

The book ‘Blonde’ is epic. And long at 700 pages. I read it while living in Paris which was kind of ideal, surrounded by sensuality, a city engraved with both silly and serious distractions. The book is like that, packed with vignettes and poems and slices of Marilyn’s life, both real and imagined; Joyce Carol Oates invests every ounce of her wild and writerly imagination into it. It is an insane read.

In fact, I gave it to friends, one went a little mad, told me she threw the book against the wall. And she was 20 years older, so I suppose I’d be her age today. Doubt I’d do the same but did love re-visiting some of the vignettes before watching the movie last night.

Like this bit which remains in my brain – 20 years on:

JCO carries on with her brilliance for several more pages, then ends with this…

And that, ladies and gentlemen is what we call imagination.

And if you watch Pandora and the Flying Dutchman, and witness the woman named Pandora (Ava Gardner ) with the finest figure, at her most Avaesque, as she tests her admirers by demanding they give up something they value….you might even assume this meeting between the essence of blonde and the essence of brunette actually happened.

Too bad the movie was just sad. Lacked all the imagination of language; suppose that’s why we read.

Published by baileyalexander

An American living in Piemonte. Sailed across the Atlantic aboard our 43 Nauticat in 2002 and spent over a decade living in Rome, Paris, Prague, Malta, Venice and Bucharest before settling in Piemonte, Italia.

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