The job of the undermajordomo is to help and assist the majordomo. Lucy Minor is up to the challenge! From there, I can’t really explain more because you won’t believe me. This is a book that you need to read yourself (especially if you were a fan of Patrick deWitt’s previous novel The Sisters Brothers).
What genre is this novel? What genre is Napoleon Dynamite? The Princess Bride? Moonrise Kingdom? Breaking the genre barrier = suspension of disbelief in a new way. Yes, deWitt employs humour and fairy-tale/ morality tale-like qualities, yet it doesn’t feel like I’ve read this before. Just as with Napoleon Dynamite, I’ve seen teen/ high school dramas before, but this one bends the mould.
I think the reason I loved the novel and the afore mentioned films is that they take the boundaries/ the lines, and they play within them in sure a new and creative way that I can’t help but fall in love with the genre or type all over again.
This is also true with music. For example, here are some songs that play just enough to be hard to categorize, yet stay true:
Feist, “The Bad in Each Other“: they syncopation causes you to stop and truly listen, because it’s unexpected.
Metallica, “Nothing Else Matters“: they play with a symphony. Heavy metal with classical instruments and singing.
Alt J, “Left Hand Free“: Blues? Rockabilly? Pop?
Beirut, “Gibraltar“: A scaled-down acoustic song? Live performers or machines?
I love bending the rules and working within the parameters to create something creative, which is why I appreciate the genius of others who are capable to creating something so intriguing and captivating. This is how I felt reading deWitt’s Undermajordomo Minor. I was constantly surprised at the twist of events and reactions.
It’s authors like deWitt who renew my love and joy of reading. So, thank you Patrick deWitt for your witty books!!
“I don’t necessarily want to make people stomp and clap. I simply want to engage people.” (Patrick deWitt)