Posts Tagged ‘The New Yorker’

How reviews in the current New Yorker display our acceptance yet disgust with the status quo, unremarkable proferring of the occasional best, and the communal longing for our own Golden Age

Here are the requisite links:



Inside Llewyn Davis and American Hustle are reviewed above by the New Yorker. Which if read, leads one to believe they’re being cheated by Hollywood and the New Yorker. Where is our golden age? We might shout this out and hear nothing, except this whine of a subtle notion that we are cheated by the formulaic genres now entombed on the screen for us each week. But if you consider that the Hollywood motion machine has been around a century and some change, you can then understand that this certain contemporary vibe is all a collective farce and the rule of thumb would then be: keep them happy and talking about it.

How do we move forward from this sad state of affairs? I don’t know, nor care.

Verdict: The Utmost Transparency

Evan Kerry


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Chapter 1: In which an inveterate misanthropic blogger is ordered to halt his unneeded services.

Lee Siegel I wuv you. Male or Female. Human or Transient, Sentient, OmniCritical Being. You have made my life worth living again.  Just when I was getting depressed about kicking galley proofs and taking names, here, HERE you crop up and alter my melancholic, miasma of coherent blogging. I’m quite thrilled to be of the nameless masses. The man-in-the-street, the decidedly unapologetic, man without authority and bastard of the internets. (Pardon this thunderous, abject tone, one must be forgiven in this day and age of ante-whatever age is coming next nothingness) Lee Siegel I wuv you, for writing this:


The initial thrust of the article is to bury hatchets and then it disintegrates to name dropping and a host of other unpardonable sins. I think Siegel in his new found giddiness of discovering Happy Land or Paxil, has forgetten what most will not say. The largest portion of things being published are bad, unreadable, and therefore a monstrous waste of time. This in turn fuels the negativity of reviewing. Sure, Sure his reasons for the coterie of intellect here and there are entertaining, however a bad book unjustly, modestly and generously judged only harms. More to the point, the reviews aren’t the hatchets, the books they concern are. A prime example, for all of its degrees of facility both academic and peer-reviewed is that wunderkind of a website, the ever bravish, Bostonish, bespectacled, variety internet show http://www.themillions.com   If one is interested in trends of the literary, go there. If not, anywhere but. For there will be found all sorts of gladhanding, kidgloving and other preciosity of the nice sort. My stomach has turnt in the mentioning. But that is all fine fare, unless of course your name is B.R. Myers. Conferment of the authors of that website aside, we turn back to Lee Siegel. I hope against hope that you never write anything again.


Evan Kerry




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we use the magazine to pump the book and vice versa


In the newest New Yorker we have rediscovered the ‘tack’ of John O’Hara, who happens to have the highest short story output for the magazine, in order to hype the re-release of his Depression-era novel from Penguin Classics. A grand waste of time? Yes, but only if you’re familiar with the author. This placement, it cannot be a ‘new thing’, is so J’en sais pas I have indeed vomited in my mouth once again. Though forgive me for ennui does certain things to a 32-year old man. In conclusion, simply, blah.


Evan Kerry

Aug. 2013

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In her new piece of fiction in The New Yorker  Joyce Carol Oates really spews froth. It’s not that the short story is bad, it is terrible. Why is it terrible? Well if her sub-par dialogue, no sense of place and boring flashbacks weren’t enough it is because JCO is just a plain terrible writer. I said it first! Now back to our regularly scheduled programming.

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No I have not read Infinite Jest or any thing else from David Foster Wallace except his Tennis Article that is so lauded. I barely even finished it though, more like breezed through it, if you will allow such disgrace. http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=nnpCIOb-2Wc  So upon receiving the The New Yorker this week I promptly digested it from the view of the table of contents and came across the piece of Fiction by David Foster Wallace. Wow is all I can say. I am not impressed one bit. This man was a writing machine though. Have you held up his novels to the light? You can barely see through them. I mean, I should say, I can see through them.

This man embarked upon a short career and chalked up a lot of words. From the beginnings of this fiction piece his writing falls apart. Describing some gift he received, the narrator deigns to imbue the reader with the meaning behind certain things. Whoopdeedo. The sense I get from teh writing is that the author, had I that fleeting chance to sit and chat, is a much, much more intelligent being than I could ever be. The author has taken this opportunity (the writing piece) to show me how intelligent he can possibly be. It is just that the writing is flat, insipid, and boring. Well that’s Post-modernism for you, one could say. You don’t get it would be the sonorous approval from the Academy. Well that’s just a crappy, over-hyped fad I could say, like for instance bell-bottoms or the flappers. Ever keenly remembered for how outlandish and stupid they were and for promulgating themselves to the unwitting.

I also harbor suspicions that Wallace was like this all the time, in his writing I am certain. I have yet to see any substantive video of the Man or Writing Machine? You decide.


Michael E. K. McCullough

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Take it from me there is nothing worse than reading bad writing which is focused upon more bad writing. Now I don’t know what your stance is on Toni Morrison, (little know fact: she is Jim’s second cousin) or on Updike and frankly I don’t care either. Now, now sensitive reader don’t close your browser just yet I still have a quasi-rant/tirade to go on.  Where shall we begin?  I guess it started in college when I was assigned to read Beloved twice and Paradise once, never finishing either novel I developed a lively, silent rage against Mrs. Morrison.  With her fragmented, shattered style I reached new heights of perspicacity, clearly here was the most profound example of a living writer who, having only written a handful of novels, is elevated to the status of Matriarch, Saint, no, what I really mean is that she is the Alpha and Omega of Literature and she reigns supreme in the world today, according to some people.  Sorry I digress, what I am trying to say is that I firmly believe Mrs. Morrison will fade very quickly after her death and that her writing isn’t, you know, worth the paper it is printed upon. Mrs. Morrison is the ultimate example of a writer who is famous during their lifetime and then vanishes reaching their terminus. Same with Stephen King, but that is old news.

So I am in Borders today and I flip through The New Yorker to find John Updike’s glowing, bloated review of ‘A Mercy’, the newest novel from the esteemed Toni Morrison.  Is he afraid of saying a bad word about the author? I’m not afraid.  Mrs. Morrison’s diction/syntax is for the birds.  Who does she think she is Tolstoy? Even he didn’t write with such mock arrogance as this woman does.  To put it plainly I can’t stand Morrison’s style, and style is still the thing you know, not to mention her utter lack of being able to put together a coherent, linear narrative. Please attempt to read The Bluest Eye with a straight face. Updike handles his reading of Morrison like a third-grader. She has an epic sense of time blah, blah, blah. Where is the criticism? Oh wait I have already answered that question. It is because of the deification of Mrs. Morrison that she is shielded from any criticism. I try not to pay any mind to the phenom but sometimes one just can’t control what one is writing. So please don’t take offense at this little blurb, I’m sure you have something better to do than leave me a nasty message.

Here is the link to the article, read for yourself the half-assed way in which Updike handles ‘The Critics’ section of The New Yorker.


In the years to come we shall see how Time handles the effluence of Toni Morrison.

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