Laura Gonzalez

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10 Aug 2013

Knots and Crosses by Ian Rankin *

Reading dates: 01 August 2013 – 09 August 2013

Having given 1* to Fiesta, I did not feel I could give any more to Rebus’ first appearance, even though I enjoyed reading this much more than Fiesta, save for the fact that Neil and I read Fiesta aloud to each other. Rankin references Muriel Spark, Dostoyevsky and Stevenson’s Jekyll and Hyde in this book and, although laudable, I felt he was trying to hard. The plot needs work. Perhaps he should have referenced a bit more of Nabokov’s divine details, the way he introduces Clare Quilty in Lolita. How we find out who is sending the knots and crosses is one of those moments that almost made me close the book. It is a short book, so I continued, but I am not sure I will read any of the rest. Well, I probably will because crime fiction is addictive, but Rankin made me miss Denise Mina and the good in Jo Nesbo. Perhaps it is the voice, the fact that the narrator is not Rebus, that annoyed me. In crime fiction, the position of the narrator is crucial, which is where Denise Mina got it absolutely right with the Garnethill trilogy. Maureen O’Donnell is fascinating. Instead of more detection, though, I should return to Spark and read Dostoyevsky at long last. There’s that for Rankin, he inspired me to try Crime and Punishment.

My new year’s resolution of reading less 1* books is not quite working out is it? It was my first fall from the list, my first weakness. Forgive me, I have had my quick, cheap thrill. I am back on the serious work.

Posted in Blog, Book Reviews, Reading


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About Me

I am an artist and writer. My recent practice performance, film, dance, photography and text, and my work has been performed, exhibited and published in many venues in Europe and the US. I have spoken at numerous conferences and events, including the Museum for the Fashion Institute of Technology in New York, the Medical Museum in Copenhagen, College Arts Association and the Association for the Psychoanalysis of Culture and Society. When I am not following Freud, Lacan and Marx’s footsteps with my camera or creating performance works as part of my Athenaeum Research Fellowship at the Royal Conservatoire of Scotland, I teach postgraduate students at Transart Institute.

I am currently immersed in an interdisciplinary project exploring knowledge and the body of the hysteric. In 2013, together with Child and Adolescent Mental Health practitioner Frances Davies, I co-edited the book ‘Madness, Women and the Power of Art’, to which I contributed a work authored with Eleanor Bowen. My book ‘Make Me Yours: How Art Seduces’ was published by Cambridge Scholars in 2016. In this text, investigates psychoanalytic approaches to making and understanding objects of seduction, including an examination of parallels between artistic and analytic practices, a study of Manolo Blahnik’s shoes as objects of desire, a disturbing encounter with Marcel Duchamp’s last work, and the creation of a psychoanalytically inspired Discourse of the Artefact, a framework enabling the circulation of questions and answers through a relational approach to artworks.