Give me books, fruit, french wine and fine weather and a little music out of doors. --John Keats

Monday, May 26, 2014

"The Visible Man" by Chuck Klosterman

This is the story of an Austin, Texas therapist and her treatment of one specific patient: a man who can make himself become invisible. Not a man who thinks he can make himself invisible, or who has delusions of invisibility, but a former scientist who had been part of a now-scrapped government project, and who secretly and unofficially completed the work after the project was discontinued.

Chuck Klosterman comes up with great what-if questions. (Seriously. You should check this out--we've had a lot of fun with it.) So, what would you do if you could become invisible? Would you use your powers for good or evil? The "visible man" strongly believes that no human can honestly and purely behave according to their true personality unless completely alone, and he feels compelled to study people being themselves... by quietly breaking into their houses and observing them in their (supposed) solitude. Somehow he believes this is a good use of his power, but not everyone would be able to see his point of view.

The story intertwines the evolution of an odd patient/therapist relationship with the stories the man tells of situations he has witnessed during his surreptitious "research". He was privy to some unusual scenarios, which seemed only too limited--certainly not in scope, but in number. I wished there had been more! I wouldn't mind reading more Klosterman books, if I can assume his others measure up.

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