Joshua Mohr’s book, Some Things That Meant The World To Me, depicts the multitudinous thoughts and feelings of the main protagonist Rhonda. Mohr, using Rhonda as the intermediary, gracefully transitions through a woven stream of consciousness creating a juxtaposition of inner monologues and dramatic monologues.
Rhonda, a de-personalized, abused, and neglected child is maniacally caught in the “Münchausen syndrome by proxy” of his mother and mother’s megalomaniac boyfriend, Letch. Struggling to keep his sanity, Rhonda creates a world manifesting his younger self, his runaway mother, and a stretching safe home where the rooms and hallways expand indefinitely and are enchantingly occupied by a Jumanji-esque collection of creatures.
Mohr’s book started kicking my ass from the first scene when Rhonda altruistically chases down the assailant in a stripper beating only to receive a pimp pummeling himself. I too chased Rhonda through trapdoors hidden underneath dumpsters, prune drinking bar rats, boxes of tcha-bliss wine, and antifreeze Bloody Marias, only to find myself drunkenly staring at an Alice In Wonderland one-way mirror watching the mind of Mr. Mohr jaunt around.
As Rhonda transgresses through terrible child to adult, left eye, right eye memories, he finds himself back at the site where it all began; his evil childhood home now commercially replaced with a hideous orange Home Depot building.
The only thing left to do, to rid himself of these haunting childhood memories, was to burn that bitch ‘poltergeist style’ to the ground. Rhonda starts in the curtain aisle.
At the end of the book, I needed a hair-of-the-dog drink and a cigarette, putting the book down to ask myself, “what the hell just happened?” and “did what the hell just happen, really just happen?”
Like a Rorschach inkblot, Some Things That Meant The World To Me, can been deciphered using a dichotomy of reading methods; sober and inebriated. I would stay away from reading this book while under the influence of psychedelic hallucinogens or drinking cocktails that include antifreeze as an active ingredient. If not, you might find your reading experience paralleling Rhonda’s manifested life. When your, younger self appears wearing a miner’s helmet, smoking a cigarette, and drags you through the trapdoor of your dumpster’s mind using a leash of sidewinder snakes… don’t say I didn’t warn you.
When all is read and done, not picking up Mohr’s novel would be like Rhonda said… “having a tire iron re-break your arm while offering to give a man with frozen ginger-ale teeth a blowjob.”
Don’t blow it.
Two Dollar Radio published Joshua Mohr’s novel Some Things That Meant The World To Me. Fight Song, Mohr’s latest novel, will be released next month.