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A Review Of "Augmented Reality" By Jason Guile (1 Viewer)

“Augmented Reality” by Jason Guile

The fact that you have purchased and are now reading the book “Augmented Reality” (Authorhouse, $9.50) is a personal insult to Jason Guile.

Using iconoclastic literary techniques, peppering backward and forward scenes with famous quotes and a slew of F-words, and using a story structure so intolerant towards the rules of traditional publishing that he insists on naming his characters “Mr. ******” and “X”, “Y”, “Z” (that is, three people) the author brings the experiment of creating self-awareness to a newfangled level. For over one hundred pages, that seems more like one hundred years of human society lived, Guile kvetches and expounds on the meaning of life (or lack thereof) like Friedrich Nietzsche on a sugar high and annoyed at the pervasive stupidity of the Pepsi generation.

There is no question that Guile is a talented if “curmudgeonly” writer. While he seems to detest your company, (in characters, as Mr. ****** seems uncomfortable with his own skin let alone that of others) and as the story teller (he taunts you with his godlike power as the writer to giveth or taketh away something you once took for granted, like capital letters and exclamation points) he is also more than willing to expatiate to his readers for pages at a time, the absence of absolute truth and the omnipresence of hypocritical irony.

And the truth is, the majority of writers we know simply can’t do that well. Yet, Jason Guile has the ability to write circles around his philosophical contemporaries and to have a delirious time doing it. There are brilliant moments in “Augmented Reality”, that are all at once, nonsensical, confusing, impressionistic or deeply specific, depending on how much time his reader is willing to invest in the futile quest for knowledge. For example, the final scene in the story (though it’s dogmatic to state that it’s really the final scene) sees something as simple as a young man presenting an argument in class and yet through words and subtleties, presents it to us as more of a Nietzschian triumph over modern civilization.

But there are a lot of moments in a day. And some moments in the book are willfully shrill. In fact, at times there seems to be a dichotomy taking place between philosophical transcendence and individualistic ranting. For every sibylline diatribe inspired by Wilde or Alinsky, we’re also treated to a Seinfeldian lecture on the rules of dating. Whether or not sexual dominance is intrinsically linked with mankind’s ascension to freethinking supremacy is best left up to the individual to decide. (And hell, on lonely nights, I might agree with the philosophy) Yet at times those skirmishes do clash with the rest of the profundity, though it doesn’t totally kill the noetic mood either.

This is a book that clearly takes risks and one from an author that clearly thinks. Yet beyond the superficial questions of What’s going on, Why did he write that and What the heck was that part about, we find the all-important one, What does it really mean? Perhaps it is as difficult to answer that simple question, as it is to explain the true meaning of life itself. Yet there is an ominous statement in the book, at the ultimate conclusion, that dares to pose as our long awaited answer.

“I would really like to say that this wasn’t all in vain and perhaps there is something that can be taken from the whole tragic comedy, but I can’t see it.”

Woe is us, as Guile’s sheep-like followers, if that really is our augmented reality after so many words of wisdom later. With such a resonating and impudent mind as the author boasts and well delivers in such a short but abstruse masterpiece, we could only speculate on the significance of Guile’s career-ending, 900 page swan song, in which he would exhort his discovered meaning of life, with his all-important point finally realized, and state firmly his word without begging Nietzsche’s permission first. Maybe in penning his greatest work he would give us something better than a reason to read: a reason to live. GRADE: A-
 

eleutheromaniac

Senior Member
An interesting review, to say the least. My concern with any review of this book was that the reviewer would inadvertently impress his own interpretation of the book on anyone who read the review; but I have to admit, I believe you’ve managed to give an accurate review of Augmented Reality without overtly emphasizing your own impressions on the piece. A masterful review. My humble appreciation for taking the time and energy to do this.

‘Begging Nietzsche's permission’. An interesting take....

As for my 900-page opus? As we speak, it nears completion. Look for it on bookshelves in, oh say, 2047

I'd like to put this on my webpage, with your permission.
 

Airborneguy

Senior Member
Close to what I saw...but I could never put it into words. I wouldn't even attempt to review something like that. BUT, I would recomend it to anyone who likes to think while they are reading.
 

eleutheromaniac

Senior Member
That's too bad, Airborne; I was looking forward to seeing what you had to say, too. Especially since we seem to share different tastes in literature. Thanks for the recommendation, though. Did it change your view on philosophy? Did it get you more interested in reading Nietzsche, Dostoevsky, etc.?

I'm still up for a Q+A, but I don't see the point after this review. I think the readers can take it from here.

Anyone else on the forum read this yet? If so, what did you think?
 
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