play it as it lays review.

I know what nothing means, and keep playing on.

A book you may recognize if you watched season 2 of You: Play It As It Lays by THE Joan Didion is a masterpiece. It was a fairly quick read, but the content was heavy. The story is set in the 1960s and involves a lot of existential crises.

Everything goes. I am working very hard at not thinking about how everything goes.

Maria is an actress in Los Angeles who is fading away from the scene. Her relevance has passed. She has a divorce going on as well as a young child who is in a care facility due to a developmental disability. Maria’s friends are all in the business of film, including her soon to be ex. Throughout the novel you get an eerie sense of Maria slipping into nothingness. Her life is slipping away from her and she doesn’t have the strength to put up a fight for it.

I am what I am. To look for reasons is beside the point.

This book is filled with struggles, abuse, drugs, sex, an abortion, alcohol. It’s not for the faint of heart in my opinion. Didion perfectly captured the loneliness and cold feeling of what Maria experiences. Didion also adds warmth with her descriptions of California and Nevada.

Something real was happening: this was, as it were, her life. If she could keep that in mind she would be able to play it through, do the right thing, whatever that meant.

Joan Didion remains one of my favorite writers for her clear and concise style. From start to finish I was captivated with this story and was sad to finish it. I was greedy for more. This was the first fiction piece I have read of hers. Everything else has been essay collections or autobiographical books. I am blown away at her ability to be so great at both fiction and non-fiction.

Try to live in the now and keep my eye on the hummingbird. I see no one I used to know, but then I’m not just crazy about a lot of people. I mean maybe I was holding all the aces, but what was the game?

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