Welcome to the Goddamn Ice Cube
January 2, 2019 7:23 AM - by Blair Braverman - Subscribe

A young woman confronting her fears and finding home in the North. Blair Braverman fell in love with the North at an early age: By the time she was nineteen, she had left her home in California, moved to Norway to learn how to drive sled dogs, and worked as a tour guide on a glacier in Alaska.
posted by dinty_moore (6 comments total) 3 users marked this as a favorite
I ended up buying this for $2 and reading it within a day - to the point where I feel like I should have paid full price for it. It was extremely good, and an enjoyable read - but while I'd been warned there was sexual assault in the book, I wasn't quite expecting someone to expose themselves on the first page, and enough of the men in the book were shitty that I was bracing myself for the moment that the one or two men that weren't shitty to end up betraying her.
posted by dinty_moore at 7:29 AM on January 2, 2019

Thanks for the warning! I bought this because I love Blair Braverman, but never made it past the first couple of pages because of that vibe.
posted by leesh at 8:09 AM on January 2, 2019

Ah, I just finished the audiobook (read by the author) a few weeks ago and enjoyed it very much despite the recurring assault themes. Blair and her husband Q are such a damn delight on Twitter!
posted by marshmallow peep at 12:43 PM on January 2, 2019

Yeah, to be clear, I don't think the sexual assault themes detracted from the quality of the book at all - I still really liked it. The story of the norwegian school was just wild. And I certainly don't think that she should have left it out or anything - it's obvious that it was very much part of both the environment she found herself in and the choices she made (plus, the way she writes about it is just so evocative - that sort of background radiation of sexual harassment that happens in male-dominated environments). But, you know, content warning. You will be bracing yourself for sexual harassment and assault through the entire memoir. Not everybody's thing. And not the tone you might expect from Blair's twitter feed.
posted by dinty_moore at 1:15 PM on January 2, 2019

I really enjoyed this and learned so much, but yes, the sexual assault is jarring (rightly so) and really shook me. Her writing is great, and the assaults underscore how the heroic male adventure narrative isn't half as challenging as the heroic female narrative. I really hope she writes another memoir too - I love following their adventures on twitter (and the dog photos) but it can be very relentlessly positive in tone even when there are challenges, and I'd like to imagine she has space for her full range.
posted by carbide at 1:39 AM on January 3, 2019

This rings so true to my experience of being the only woman in an otherwise very masculine environment, right down to submitting to awful things in a relationship because it minimizes the other sexual harassment. Also one of my best friends from high school studied abroad in Norway, left early, and then went back to go to Folk School. This was an amazing book.
posted by ChuraChura at 7:41 PM on January 14, 2019 [1 favorite]

« Older The Gifted: Enemy of My Enemy...   |  Movie: Body Heat... Newer »

You are not logged in, either login or create an account to post comments