Taking Ivy Seriously

I fired up my Kindle to read this one because I enjoy Matthew David Brozik’s writing so much. He specializes in silliness for nerds, LOL humor for the crossword-puzzle set. If you read “Shouts & Murmurs” in the bathroom and totally get a kick out of those memes that go around with Downton Abbey episodes retold as Tweets, Brozik is your type of writer.

Taking Ivy Seriously lives up to his previous work. It imagines a world more or less like contemporary America, except where literature and words have very high stakes. So, basically, a world like the one I live in. Poetry is a bit illicit and politicians are caught messing around with words out of wedlock. It’s a tale of intrigue that centers around a teenaged girl and her manuscript of pedestrian poetry. Only Brozik could make that unbelievably funny.

I won’t spoil the plot for you, but I’ll say that one of the charms of this book is that Brozik always knows just how far to take the humor. It’s tongue-in-cheek—far more than most writers could get away with—but the whole time you get the sense that Brozik is laughing at himself for doing it.

If you or a nerd you love is looking for light, fun beach reading as a break from Elizabethan poetry and Bakhtin, this is the book you’re looking for. If you enjoyed Eat, Pray, Love, I can’t help you with that.

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One response to “Taking Ivy Seriously

  1. [Is it gauche—if gauche is the word I want—for me to leave a comment here? Well, then, je suis gauche. (I don't speak French.)]

    If you’d like to read outtakes from IVY—scenes that I loved enough not to delete, but which just served no purpose in the novella—let me point you to them now:

    • “Of Hot Dogs and Horse Races” [imdb.name/IVY/outtake.html]
    • “And Your Sister!” [www.goodreads.com/story/show/343651-taking-ivy-seriously]

    And thank you, Emily, for the review!

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