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Can you imagine That you can say something, offhand, and it can matter, it can really matter to someone else Can you imagine what it s like to hear something like that To hear someone say something and feel the world ripple around you Oh How to Set a Fire and Why what an odd little book you are What an oddball collection of characters you got and the sweetest sweetheart of an Auntie there is I feel you I feel you even where the writing is very detached and I certainly feel you when it ma Can you imagine That you can say something, offhand, and it can matter, it can really matter to someone else Can you imagine what it s like to hear something like that To hear someone say something and feel the world ripple around you Oh How to Set a Fire and Why what an odd little book you are What an oddball collection of characters you got and the sweetest sweetheart of an Auntie there is I feel you I feel you even where the writing is very detached and I certainly feel you when it manages to touch my heart Just in case the letter doesn t get all the way to you, I gave it some wings so it could fly the rest of the way Lucia was such a ferocious little genius y oddball girl, I sincerely do not know how else to describe her she s super tough and she s utterly true to herself all of the times it makes me envious many times over I can tell you view spoiler My aunt s stroke had felt pretty real too hide spoiler I guess real things happen all at once, and then you go back to the false parade of garbage that characterizes modern life.Well, I don t want to go back there I am so weak for a flourish relationship between a young lady and her elder relatives I am just mush for Lucia and Lucy view spoiler And that final letter Lucy left for her hide spoiler I was basically inconsolable view spoiler It is a sad thing that I imagine I will not live hide spoiler to see you become utterly her become her whom you will be inalienably That person, I feel, will be someone to behold view spoiler Goodbye for now, hide spoiler Your strongest supporter always, Lucy (((FREE PDF))) ⇫ How to Set a Fire and Why ⇢ A startling, subversive novel about a teenage girl who has lost everything and will burn anythingFourteen year old Lucia is a young narrator whose voice will long ring in your ears She is angry with almost everyone, especially people who tell her what to do She follows the one rule that makes any sense to her Don t Do Things You Aren t Proud Of Orphaned and living with her elderly aunt in poverty in the converted garage of a large mansion, Lucia makes her way through the world with only a book, a Zippo lighter, and a pocket full of stolen licorice Expelled from school, again, Lucia spends her days riding the bus to visit her mother in The Home When Lucia discovers a secret Arson Club, she will do anything to be a part of it Her own arson manifesto is a marvellous anarchist pamphlet, written with biting wit and striking intelligenceThe voice of teenaged Lucia is a tour de force a brilliant, wrenching cry from the heart and mind of a super smart, funny girl who can t help telling us the truth, a riveting chronicle of family, misguided friendship, and lossHow to Set a Fire and Why is Jesse Ball s most accessible novel yet after Silence Once Begun and A Cure for Suicide, the pyrotechnics on display here will dazzle Jesse Ball is one of the most interesting writers around PERIOD He is fearless, inventive, and somehow manages to have a distinct voice although his books all have their own peculiar vibe I just loved the enigmatic Census winner of the Gordon Burn Prize 2018, and rightly so , and while it would beapt so say that I rather admired than loved How to Set a Fire and Why , the sound of its teenage narrator Lucia intrigued me To write from the perspective of a rebellious teen can easily take Jesse Ball is one of the most interesting writers around PERIOD He is fearless, inventive, and somehow manages to have a distinct voice although his books all have their own peculiar vibe I just loved the enigmatic Census winner of the Gordon Burn Prize 2018, and rightly so , and while it would beapt so say that I rather admired than loved How to Set a Fire and Why , the sound of its teenage narrator Lucia intrigued me To write from the perspective of a rebellious teen can easily take a turn for the pretentious and embarrasing, but certainly not in the hands of this author Lucia is smart, strong and fragile at the same time as she is trying to come to terms with the tough world around her With her father dead and her mother in a mental institution, she is living in a garage with her beloved elderly aunt At school, she is struggling, because she is unwilling to play by rules she perceives as hollow this clever misfit is under a lot of pressure, and didn t we all feel like burning everything to the ground at some point Although still young, she has no illusions regarding the workings of the world and feels a sense of futility, but nevertheless she believes that people can be kind or at least kinder to each other if they want to but what if they don t Lucia, who always carries her late father s zippo with her, joins a mysterious Arson Club and starts to write a pamphlet entitled How to Set a Fire and Why in which she elaborates on arson as a form of resistance against an oppressive system that values wealth and property above anything else This novel is held together by the captivating voice of Ball s narrator while the text itself digresses again and again it s part of the poetic concept and helps to unfold Lucia s worldview, but I found it a little tedious sometimes I m generally struggling with meandering narratives, it s just not my thing While it becomes clear that Ball oncewrote a book which is, at its core, dealing with questions of compassion, I found parts of Lucia s pamphlet slightly placative, which put me off because the book truly shines in its most edgy passages.Still, I absolutely love Jesse Ball and have the greatest admiration for his work and his world of ideas I can t wait to read whatever he comes up with next This is my third Jesse Ball novel and I have to say I can t think of another contemporary author who has such an original and inventive voice and style The best thing about Ball is that he s no one trick pony the only thing his books have in common is that they are each wholly unique.In How to Set a Fire and Why, his protagonist is a teenage girl named Lucia, who tells us her story through a series of journal entries The best way I can describe Lucia is like this Imagine Holden Caulfield if This is my third Jesse Ball novel and I have to say I can t think of another contemporary author who has such an original and inventive voice and style The best thing about Ball is that he s no one trick pony the only thing his books have in common is that they are each wholly unique.In How to Set a Fire and Why, his protagonist is a teenage girl named Lucia, who tells us her story through a series of journal entries The best way I can describe Lucia is like this Imagine Holden Caulfield if he were into arson, class warfare and vigilante justice If that isn t enough to pique your interest, I don t know what to tell you.Lucia s father is dead and her mother is in a mental institution She lives with her 75 year old aunt, who fully supports her niece s myriad outlets for teen rebellion After getting kicked out of her previous high school, Lucia finds a way to fit in at her new school she join s a secret Arson Club.I m afraid I m making this all sound very dark, but it s not Lucia s voice is hilarious, sardonic and sarcastic She s smart enough to rationalize her penchant for destruction, insightful enough to clarify that while she doesn t think there s meaning in anything, she also doesn t find nihilism exciting.Lucia is a unique new voice in teen rebellion, convinced that what she sets out to do is right and just Most of us have been there before, though hopefully not to the point of committing felonies Still, it s hard to feel anything but love for this subversive character.I recommend this book to anyone who is drawn to quirky novels, from Chuck Palahniuk s nihilism and anarchy to Miranda July s peculiar tenderness Lucia Stanton is a cynical 14 year old misfit who lives with her elderly aunt in a garage At first she only supports the idea of arson, but events draw her into getting personally involved This is one of those fairly rare novels that stand out immediately for the first person voice Lucia reminded me of Holden Caulfield or of Mim Malone from David Arnold s Mosquitoland She s like a cynical philosopher For as heartbreaking as her family history is, she was always either making me laugh or imp Lucia Stanton is a cynical 14 year old misfit who lives with her elderly aunt in a garage At first she only supports the idea of arson, but events draw her into getting personally involved This is one of those fairly rare novels that stand out immediately for the first person voice Lucia reminded me of Holden Caulfield or of Mim Malone from David Arnold s Mosquitoland She s like a cynical philosopher For as heartbreaking as her family history is, she was always either making me laugh or impressing me with her wisdom Although this is his sixth novel, I hadn t heard much about Jesse Ball prior to picking it up His skill at creating the interior world of a troubled 14 year old girl leads me to believe that the rest of his work would be well worth a look.See my full review at The Bookbag I loved this Lucia s voice is blisteringly funny, dark and unapologetically idealistic She s been dealt a shit hand in life and she s angry at the fakes, idiots and condescending adults that she has to deal with every day The writing is fantastic I completely bought into Lucia as a narrator and was knocked out by her smart, sad and hilarious take on the world I m definitely going to chase downof Jesse Ball s books. This review has been hidden because it contains spoilers To view it, click here She told me I was a good writer, but I could tell she didn t care about it Good writer, like, one of the ones who leaves the good parts out Jesse Ball, this is how I feel about you The whole book I was waiting, waiting, waiting for something interesting to happen Every moment felt like it was just a temporary fix to a plot going nowhere, distracting the reader from realizing that they re wasting their time The school doesn t even have an Arson Club The blurb is misleading It s like he wa She told me I was a good writer, but I could tell she didn t care about it Good writer, like, one of the ones who leaves the good parts out Jesse Ball, this is how I feel about you The whole book I was waiting, waiting, waiting for something interesting to happen Every moment felt like it was just a temporary fix to a plot going nowhere, distracting the reader from realizing that they re wasting their time The school doesn t even have an Arson Club The blurb is misleading It s like he wants you to believe Lucia becomes involved and interesting, and that s not the case She s just dull with new people surrounding her But, like I said, not an Arson Club What seemed to be one of the most important parts, the pamphlet itself, was terribly boring and seemed to lose Lucia s voice in my opinion When I finally became interested, once she actually set the fire, it was over It felt like, We did it We climbed to the top of the mountain and didn t get the descend I wanted aftermath I wanted consequences On the other hand, maybe that was for the best It probably would ve disappointed me as much as the rest of the book did anyway, so maybe it was better to end on a high note, if I can even truly call that one Maybe I would ve enjoyed itif I liked Lucia as a character, but I didn t It felt like Jesse was trying too hard to make her jaded I couldn t help but think the entire way through, Jesse Ball has no fucking clue what it means to be a teenage girl Wow, what a book I can t figure out another author who writes like Jesse Ball does He suffuses so much artistry and philosophy into his writing and characters that his books are hard to classify Longer review to come This is a toughie to digest, but I am very impressed and highly recommend it. I thought about the fire I know it was just an abandoned building but I felt like something had happened, a real thing for once My aunt s stroke had felt pretty real too I guess real things happen all at once, and then you go back to the false parade of garbage that characterizes modern life How To Set a Fire And Why is the sixth novel by American author, Jesse Ball Lucia Stanton lives in virtual poverty with her elderly Aunt Margaret in a garage at the back of a messy garden She has be I thought about the fire I know it was just an abandoned building but I felt like something had happened, a real thing for once My aunt s stroke had felt pretty real too I guess real things happen all at once, and then you go back to the false parade of garbage that characterizes modern life How To Set a Fire And Why is the sixth novel by American author, Jesse Ball Lucia Stanton lives in virtual poverty with her elderly Aunt Margaret in a garage at the back of a messy garden She has been thrown out of her last school for anti social behaviour and now attends Whistler High School When her aunt gives her a notebook with a black felted cover, she decides to use in to write down her predictions The Book Of How Things Will Go.It is apparent from her narrative that Lucia is intelligent a lot smarter than some of her teachers But Lucia has a subversive streak, and her aunt supports her individuality Along with predictions, Lucia relates the events of her life in an almost stream of consciousness style And, after some interaction with would be fire setters at her new school, she also records in her notebook, her own pamphlet HOW TO SET A FIRE AND WHY.Lucia s behaviour may be related to the reason that her mother is essentially catatonic in a care facility, that her father is dead his Zippo lighter is her only remaining piece of him , and that her aunt is now her guardian But whatever those events may be, they are never revealed to the reader Lucia is bright and audacious, but for older readers, may be a little difficult to relate to, and some readers may have difficulty with the lack of quotation marks for speech Kelly Blair has designed a brilliantly clever cover to showcase this highly original novel 3.5 s If J.D Salinger s Holden Caulfield had a tryst with Stephen King s Carrie, perhaps she would be a bit like Lucia Stanton cynical, disillusioned, subversive, self aware, and lost Her father is dead, her mother is ailing, and she lives full time with her destitute yet caring aunt, in a converted garage Every day, she wears the same uniform to school, where she is marginalized Unlike her schoolmates, who are burning with the promise of adolescence, Lucia s flame may be predestined to quickl If J.D Salinger s Holden Caulfield had a tryst with Stephen King s Carrie, perhaps she would be a bit like Lucia Stanton cynical, disillusioned, subversive, self aware, and lost Her father is dead, her mother is ailing, and she lives full time with her destitute yet caring aunt, in a converted garage Every day, she wears the same uniform to school, where she is marginalized Unlike her schoolmates, who are burning with the promise of adolescence, Lucia s flame may be predestined to quickly burn out Until she meets up with other misfits in the Sonar Club an acronym for Arson Club and seriously begins to explore how she can set fire to the world.There is, indeed, a manifesto printed within these pages that fulfills the promise of the title stating how to set a fire and why It is the why that fuels the narrative of the book For those whose promising flames are being extinguished by hypocrisy and injustice, inability to embrace those who are different or even to recognize their potential , and forced to participate in the false parade of garbage that characterizes modern life , burning down the past and striking out for new horizons evocative of Huckleberry Finn sometimes seems the only solution.I expect to be prodded and provoked by Jesse Ball s prose no two past efforts have been alike How to Build A Fire And Why does not disappoint