Honestly, I don’t get what the big deal is about Generation X: Tales for an Accelerated Culture. Although I found the writing witty I didn’t really get the point. Besides “understanding” the generation and telling these 20-somethings’ story, what was the point? Nothing really happens in the book and I’m not sure why it was picked for Canada Reads 2010.
I think my favourite thing about the book was the inscription; I picked the book up at a local secondhand bookstore (MacLeod’s in downtown Vancouver) and the following was written on the title page inside:
To Sean of:
From Mom & Dad
of Generation Grey Hairs Remember
At book club yesterday, there were a couple people who read and enjoyed it when it first came out. So I asked “why did you enjoy it so much?” One person said that it was probably something to do with feeling misunderstood, and Coupland, in talking to and about that generation, really identified with their feelings. Another common frustration was the side notes in the margins. The only time they seriously bothered me was when they didn’t relate back to the novel at all. Sometimes I could reread the asides and see how the witty definitions related to the story… but when it didn’t it annoyed me to a degree.
I think the main problem is that I’m from a whole different generation, not that unlike generation X-ers, but just different enough to not “click” with the book. I am now curious to read Generation A, Douglas Coupland’s latest novel (published September 2009 by Random House). Right now, we are living in a very digital and connected society and I’d be curious to read Coupland’s Generation A to see if I connect with the sentiments in a way that generation X-ers did with Generation X.
P.S. If you haven’t vote for your predicted win and your favourite book for Canada Reads at the Canada Reads Challenge, go vote! CBC also has a poll on their website. Make sure to subscribe to the podcast, or the videos, or listen live! The debates begin tomorrow, Monday, March 8th!