Sunday, May 20, 2007

Currently Reading

On Chesil Beach by Ian McEwan: This one got good reviews from a couple of people whose tastes in fiction often correspond with my own. Not this time, I fear. I'm sixty pages in and frankly a bit bored with it. However, as it only runs another hundred pages, I expect I will persevere to the end. I'll let you know if the second half saves it for me.

The Angry Young Men: A Literary Comedy of the 1950s by Humphrey Carpenter: This is serving as an entertaining counterpoint to the McEwan. It's a group biography of Kingsley Amis, Philip Larkin, John Osborne, Colin Wilson and others. I'm a fan of group biography done well, and Carpenter does it well. Rather than resorting to a series of thumbnail biographies of this cast of writers, he explores in some depth the connections, interactions and influence at play between them.

4 comments:

Litlove said...

I've just finished Lucky Jim and been astonished by how light-weight it is. I'm very tempted by the biography which sounds right up my street. As for the Ian McEwan, my publisher read it and said it was the most old-fashioned book he'd read in a long time (he did not mean this in a good way).

Dorothy W. said...

I'm curious to hear what you think of the rest of the McEwan -- he's someone I turn to fairly often and I'm intrigued by his latest.

Matt said...

Just finished my first Ian McEwan, Atonement, and enjoyed it, trying to decide which of his others to read next. I was thinking it wouldn't be On Chesil Beach, and it looks even less likely now.

JCR said...

McEwan is always like that (at least from what I have read). "Amsterdam" began quite slowly and then it took off all of a sudden... it was a great read.