Sunday, 23 December 2007

I am Uncool

A fine and witty blogger at Uncool has done me the kind service of placing the PoV among Nabokov, Turgenev and Hughes in her favourite books of the year. Two even finer points, however: she has a laudable aversion to Kafka's The Trial and Russian writers bring her to tears. I wish there were more people like her out there.

I recommend you read her blog: funny, insightful and, most importantly, unflinchingly irreverent.

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Friday, 14 December 2007

Yuletide reviews

Mark Farley is the blogger-supreme of the bookworld, embarking on the laudable quest of "reading nothing but ghostwritten, celebrity biographies for a whole year".

But when he is not reading about Jordan's struggle for success despie the restrictions of her body, he has put together a set of reviews for all the blind wanderers of Waterstones around Christmas time.

These are my contributions, for anyone interested:

The God Delusion by Richard Dawkins is as powerful and persuasive a book as you will pick up this year. It reads as though Dawkins is twenty seconds away from breaking out in expletives and head-butting a vicar. Of course it’s clever; but it’s also entertaining.

Jude: Level 1 by Julian Gough is a mind-bending, exquisitely offensive romp through modern Ireland which pulsates like a 21st century Candide on steroids. Gough is at the forefront of making comic novels clever again.

The Curtain by Milan Kundera is a return to the Czech exile’s customary musings on what makes decent writing. Economic and insightful, every budding writer addicted to polysyllables and prologues should read it.

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