It’s been a while hasn’t it? Just finished reading this review of Geoff Dyer’s Otherwise Known as the Human Condition, and was startled by its viciousness in dealing with Ian McEwan. First we hear:

It is dispiriting, therefore, to find in the midst of [Dyer’s book] a bunch of tepid reviews of tepid works—Ian McEwan’s Atonement and Don DeLillo’s Point Omega, for example—which appear nothing more than dutiful.

Moments later, we get this minor digression that seems to be entirely incidental to the point of the review:

Dyer’s own books are so much more interesting than some of the ones he reviews—you hardly expect him to hang out with a reactionary like McEwan (who has devoted himself to propping up the corpse of the “well-made” novel as if he were singlehandedly determined to prevent the sun from setting on the British Empire).

Which is funny I guess, but seems only to be there in order to signify how much more sophisticated the writer is than the purveyors (and readers) of upper-middlebrow fiction.

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