“Death the abstract, death the concept was no preparation for the drawn out dumb confusion of death the specific. Really a wonder any living gets done, all this death in waiting everyone has to clean up after, account for within themselves, all the bureaucracy and social existence.”

– The Karaoke Singer’s Guide to Self-Defense, Tim Kinsella


“Oh man, I shot Marvin in the face.”

-Vincent Vega in Pulp Fiction


Mix a little classic Tarantino with a surprisingly literary musician’s first novel and you get this month’s pairing. The Karaoke Singer’s Guide to Self-Defense combined with Pulp Fiction undoubtedly evokes some kind of reaction from you once given a fair chance.

This pairing will also give you:

  • Dialogue as both the meat and potatoes of the plot, propelling the action more than mere action could
  • A noteworthy lesson in POV
  • Flirting with mainstream ideals to produce a greater form of originality
  • Crucial dance breaks
  • Violence and performance contrasted until they appear similar
  • Sophisticated range of character development
  • A departure from a life of skilled fist-fighting
  • Nonsequential timelines and clever (never cheesy) character overlap to hold your attention
  • Unrelenting yet artful tangents
  • The stark portrayal of more-than-cruel and unusual abuse
  • A side of cocaine

Referencing everything from Myspace to Big Macs, there’s enough of a smattering of pop culture to ground these works in a pleasant, connection-inducing way. If Kinsella’s Will and Tarantino’s Butch can give up fighting, you can give up fighting the urge to resist this engaging movie and novel combo. Just don’t massage anyone’s feet in the process.