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Maven Books

Reviews about historical, literary, classic, and other fiction.  Miscellaneous book things.

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Days of Greatness
Walter Kempowski
Yevgeny Zamyatin, Clarence Brown

After Claude by Iris Owens

After Claude - Iris Owens

Initially, I thought the writing style was interesting and I wanted to see where the story would go. However, I ended up not wanting to finish it because it was really not very good. 


The narrator is clearly a troubled individual, self-centered and yet dependent on others, but it wasn't funny or interesting. A lot of the things she said or thought or did were offensive or twisted in some way. I couldn't really find much redeeming about her, especially with all the uses of the word "fag" and other offensive comments about Jews, black people, and so on. 


I'm really disappointed that NYRB has decided to republish this. Not only has it not stood the test of time, but I can't imagine it having been well-received at the time it was originally published. What might be intended to be snarky and funny (that's my best guess) is just offensive, uninteresting, and not worth reading. 


Note: I received an advanced reading copy of this from the publisher.