I wish the best-seller lists were actually comprised of literary
fiction, even if a lot of it is stale and derivative. Most
best-selling fiction these days actually consists of formulaic genre
garbage such as James Patterson-style, assembly-line thrillers with
three-page chapters, borderline porn romances with effeminate vampires
and repetitive legal thrillers.
--- In firstname.lastname@example.org, "jacquesdebierue"
> --- In email@example.com, Jack Bludis <buildsnburns@> wrote:
> <<First, most best selling fiction, until the movie comes out, is
> "literary." Boys talking to dogs, flying kites in Afghanistan, take
> offs on
> Hamlet, Lear, or what have you. Slice of life that it is interesting
> to many on
> some intellectual strata that I can't reach or comprehend. And much of
> it by
> insiders in a given profession or social strata.>>
> I think you are correct, though you forgot novels about
> "relationships", women's trouble with their sisters and mothers, and,
> last but not least: NOVELS IN ACADEMIC SETTINGS.
> Now, once in a while a book makes it to the best-seller list that is
> so unlikely that it restores one's faith in, as you say, the ether up
> there. Jonathan Franzen's book _The Corrections_ is one of them.
> Totally unlikely, a bizarre book, not catering to anyone specifically,
> or rather, trashing everybody the author encounters. But the whole is
> great, and it sold (and won big prizes, even more bizarre). And Cormac
> McCarthy is another unlikely who did it. Even Pynchon has been on the
> bestseller list!
> But mostly, as in really mostly, there are formula books attempting a
> certain genteelity of telling (faking literariness) or a certain
> feeling of fellowship with everyman and everywoman. Lear, Hamlet,
> Oedipus, what have you. Some make me wish for the application of the
> author's talent to something else. The case of the late lamented John
> Updike, a gentle soul and a magnificent technician. My secret wish was
> that Updike would one day let it rip and go Quixotic.
> End of rambling, I lost the thread, folks... I blame Bludis's
This archive was generated by hypermail 2b29 : 28 Feb 2009 EST