Dry wood bursting into flame you say?

Why yes – I did.  Whatever does it mean you ask, and where did it come from?

And the truth is, like many things on this blog, it came from someone else.  During a particularly silly book club with five very silly Brooklyn ladies, we deliberated our next book club book selection.  The process for such a weighty matter involves us reading online reviews, hearing it pitched by one of our members, and the technicalities – paperback or hardcover, fiction or non-fiction, number of pages, happy ending or post-apocalyptic, and what does the cover look like?  However one particular book – “Away: A novel by Amy Bloom” caught our attention, not because of the book cover, that’s for sure, but because of a certain review from the Washington Post which described the book as “dry wood bursting into flame.”  Now this particular phrase was meant with the best of intentions and utmost seriousness but honestly Ron Charles – what were you thinking?  I have never previously heard of anything that could best be summed up as “dry wood bursting into flame” let alone be able to conjure up an inking of what it means in reference to a novel.  Needless to say, it struck our collective funny bone, and we collapsed into giggles.

So “dry wood bursting into flame” simultaneously stands for how the original author of the phrase intended – as exciting, moving, shocking and also as I take it, to not take one’s self too seriously, because in today’s day and age of Facebook and Twitter, writing a blog is no more self-indulgent than anything else on the internet.

And the review…

Away: A novel by Amy Bloom

“[T]his whole novel reads like dry wood bursting into flame: desperate and impassioned, erotic and moving — absolutely hypnotic….The whole saga hurtles along, a rush of horrible, remarkable ordeals…” Ron Charles, The Washington Post Book World

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~ by drywoodburstingintoflame on October 19, 2009.

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