Thursday, April 26, 2012

Hmm …

 … John Irving criticizes Hemingway | Melville House Books. (Hat tip, Dave Lull.)


  1. His comments reminded me of Cynthia Ozick on H.:

    1. Interesting in part because of Naipaul's list of dislikes. Maybe I was wrong to check out after A Bend in the River, but I had much rather read Santayana or Gibbon or the King James Bible than Naipaul. To blame Hemingway for the faults of his admirers seems a bit hard; though Jonathan Yardley did remark that Papa himself retired the Bad Hemingway trophy long ago.

  2. I have to say Ozick is more credible than Irving, at least to me. I find Irving's books are frequently too much in love with their own language. it's like he learned everything there was to know about style from the late, great John Gardner—but then forgot to adhere to Gardner's own dictum that it's not enough to say things well, you have to have something worth saying. LOL

  3. HEmingway is as uneven as they come, but to dismiss the entire oevre is absurd, especially coming from a mid-lister like Irving.