Suspend Your Disbelief

Posts Tagged ‘review-of-reviews’

Essays |

Owl Criticism

In this essay, Baxter writes that a trustworthy review has “a kind of doubleness: the reviewer manages to assert somehow that the book under discussion is of some importance for one reason or another; and second, a good review provides a formal description of the book’s properties, so that you could reconstruct it from the reviewer’s sketch of it.”


Reviews |

Netherland, by Joseph O'Neill

Most reviews of Netherland have focused on the relationship between two main male characters, Chuck and Hans, and on the dramatic and emblematic role of cricket in the novel. Yet a quieter but equally resonant storyline–the unraveling of Hans and Rachel’s marriage–seems to have been labeled by critics as secondary, or even undeveloped. Perhaps this is because so-called important books don’t deal with issues of domesticity and marriage. Or, if they do, we’re quick to give them another, more important label as well: a book about identity, or politics, or globalization, or exile.



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