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on Dec. 28, 2011 :
Ribbon 359 is an urban, erotic fantasy that reads something like an omniscient, psychedelic memoir; and it also strikes me as being an extended love letter written to the "Goddess" or Jung's Anima. The narrative follows a collection of characters as they converge on Jim's Bar and Grill, which also happens to be the destination of a supernatural being who perceives their world as her canvas. It's a story that is explicitly sexual, but rarely vulgar--and when it is vulgar it seems to be done intentionally for effect.
My first read through left me with a sense of the spirit of the story, but many of the details escaped me. The writing is dense with simile and metaphor, and I felt lost in parts. On my second read through the writing became more transparent as I became used to the style and more familiar with the characters, and the artistry and magic of the story were fully revealed.
I'm giving this novel five stars because that's my take on it after two readings. But be forewarned: if you read this book without being patient and willing to decode parts of its often symbolic narrative, then you may not experience the full richness of the tale.
(reviewed long after purchase)