Welcome to the discussion of Daniel Handler's second novel, Watch Your Mouth. It is kind of hard to believe that before he became Lemony Snicket, Handler wrote this book about incest, opera, 12 stepping and the golem.
To start off the discussion I wanted to know what your overall impressions of the story were. Did you enjoy it? Do you think it make much sense? Did you like the way the story was presented: starting out as an opera and ending in a 12 step program?
I was going to choose Handler's first novel, The Basic Eight, but I liked the controversial nature of this book better. Personally, I tend to think this is the weaker of his two novels. I feel as though he tries to cram too much into the book at one time. The story is rather disturbing and horrific. But I do find myself fascinated with the golem. The idea of a man-made man to reap retribution for you.
Believe it or not, this book is supposed to be an operatic comedy. We have our narrator, Joseph, getting ready to spend a lazy summer, working at camp and being shacked up in the house of his girlfriend, Cynthia Glass, who will no doubt provide a summer full of shagging. But it becomes apparent right away, that the Glasses are unlikemost families and are caught up in some weird incestuous circle, while Mrs. Glass spends more and more time in the basement working on an "art project."
I feel one of the main obstacles to reading this book are the characters. I found most of them so unlikeable that I wanted to throw the book across the room several times. It is hard to garner sympathy for Joseph when he seems to be stilted in passivity at the events that are going on all around him. It seems fitting that he ends up a 12 stepper, it almost provides a structure in which he can function.
I am eager to hear everyone's thoughts on this story. I hated this book when I first read it, but it kind of grew on me the second time around.