Friday, October 05, 2007

Gimme your gum!

Douglas Coupland has a new book, "The Gum Thief," published Tuesday.

I loved, loved, loved "Microserfs" (it still may be part responsible for bringing us out here, and us both working on the Microsoft campus) and I liked his most recent-almost "Microserfs" sequal, "JPod." But other books of his have been more hit-and-miss with me. I'l probably give this one a shot, but am in no hurry.

I'm actually more interested in "American Band," the in-depth story of a high-school marching band in Indiana.

Says Publishers Weekly: "In 2004, first-time author Laine immersed herself in Elkhart, Indiana's Concord High School Marching Minutemen, a 240-plus ensemble preparing to defend its state title, and emerges with a detailed and intimate account that delves deep into the rarified world of competitive high school marching and the students, parents and teachers devoted to it. Max Jones is the band's hard-nosed director, in his final season at Concord, and just beginning to fall out of touch with his young charges; students, meanwhile, juggle social and spiritual concerns with their all-consuming commitment to the Minutemen (practicing more hours than even the football players). In the stories of a trumpeter whose mother contracts terminal cancer, a clarinetist who longs for her native California and a drum-line captain who aspires to West Point, Laine finds an intriguing sample of small-town, red-state Middle America's next generation."

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