I finished reading “Democracy Incorporated: Managed Democracy and the Specter of Inverted Totalitarianism” by the now deceased Sheldon S. Wolin. It is written as a series of thoughtful essays, and it provided me with some new thoughts and facts to chew over. If you actually think America is still (or ever really was) a democracy, then I highly recommend reading this book with wide open eyes. It may help you start questioning our modern lives with a little bit more scrutiny. The notion of inverted totalitarianism is an apt describer of our current state, I think.
However, I don’t think the author went far enough. He points out the problems without really looking into the mechanics or offering any concrete solutions. He is almost an apologist for the Democratic party, effectually laying the evil, power-hungry blame on the Republican elite while claiming the Democrats were merely weak and ineffectual, and almost willfully ignoring the Clinton years (there was maybe one paragraph in the entire book). To ignore the fact that the ruling elite has it’s fingers in both parties is perilous to enacting any real change. And I don’t know if he really kept his blinders on and believed that if only the Democrats were stronger, everything would’ve turned out different, or if it was a deliberate attempt on his part.
Anyway, again, the book is still relevant today, and I would have been interested to know Sheldon’s true thoughts of the years he lived during Obama’s administration. He’s someone I would have loved to have drinks with and really probe his mind.
I received my first five-star review of Penumbra on Amazon!
“I was given the opportunity to read a pre-release version of “Penumbra,” and I should warn you: I intended to read this story over the course of the week, but I found myself so wrapped up in the unfolding mystery of Beauty’s city that I ended up finishing it in one sitting! From the crisp opening pages, I was drawn into Beauty’s life and her collapsing reality. I loved the original fantasy creatures, the villains, the strange new heroes–all of it was refreshing and engaging, reminiscent of older sword and sorcery fantasy adventures, but with the grit and immediacy of a contemporary urban fantasy. From my interpretation, there were also some highly allegorical aspects to “Penumbra” that make it a stand out work of short fiction. I felt there was much more going on there than just an adventure story, but I won’t give anything away here.
I highly recommend this to anyone looking for something out-of-the-ordinary.”
Jalyn Ely reviewed Penumbra here.
I had to chuckle out loud reading the review. She enjoyed Penumbra but was confused as to why she enjoyed it.
“My overall feeling when I finished Penumbra was bafflement. As in, how could Kat Micari break so many of the rules and still have a good story? (In case you can’t tell, I’m still not sure what to make of it.)”
I wonder if my future works will be more straight-forward or if my writing will continue in this vein. Is different in this case good or bad? Who knows? I certainly don’t. But I’ll be true to my Voice as much as I can.
Of the three reviews I’ve gotten so far, the length of Penumbra seems to be an issue. Each time, I ask myself if the story would have been better served by adding a B plot, or having it take place over a longer period of time, but, again, I don’t know. I think I need to get some more of my work out there so I can get more feedback.
Anyway, I’m pleased with the review.