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The Good Life Reviewed

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Jay McInerney’s newest novel was reviewed in today’s edition of the New York Times and I’m not in the slightest bit surprised by the critic’s opinions. When you see that Michiko Kakutani is the reviewer, you can bet a car payment on the outcome.

In some ways Kakutani praises McInerney’s work. She writes that the novel is “at its most powerful in chronicling its characters’ romantic and familial travails.” But then she also unleashes complaints that the good stuff is “submerged amid pages and pages of embarrassing writing.”

Make your own decisions about McInerney and his work. Make your own decisions about this novel. And make your own decisions about whether to follow along with my completely off-the-topic rant here. But screw Kakutani. Reading her reviews has become the literary equivalent of watching the Harlem Globetrotters play the Washington Generals.

Anyway, I’ll let you decide. Read Kakutani’s review. Then also inspect this Village Voice review for balance. In this instance, Benjamin Strong calls the novel “a triumph.”

My own review of the novel for PopMatters should be posted soon.