9 of 13 people found the following review helpful
If the first few chapters are any indication this is pure 'ennui'
, 18 Oct. 2011
This review is from: The Map and the Territory (Hardcover)
Atomised, at the time, was my favourite novel, so a new 'Wellbeck' is a significant event for me.
What a let down!
In the opening chapter the author vaingloriously has his lead character refer to Michel Houellebecq as a world famous writer. Doubtless this is meant to be comic irony but it reads like pure vanity.
The remainder of the opening is about Jed's distant relationship with his father and his troubled mind regarding his mother, who committed suicide.
Jed's girlfriend is a part-time 'belle de jour' and she charges 100 euro extra for her tradesman's entrance, 'but Jed is okay with it'...
It all reads like a dull reworking of Atomised!
Will we ever escape MH's mother fixation?
I've given up on it after 50 pages. It is just a bunch of facts about art and photography and a stream of psychosis straight from MH's increasingly troubled soul.
(And yet again a listing of philosophers and famous writers to demonstrate his erudition - do all writers have to prove that they've read everything?)
Some of the translation from the French is bizarre: 'stored in TIFF format, with a lowest resolution JPEG' and 'the capture of 48 bits RGB files' is poor English and in the former case meaningless.
All the clever humour, dry wit and savage satire of his earlier work has been replaced with a dull, dreary repetitiveness.
If an author has nothing 'novel' to say he should hang up his quill and not attempt to hang his mother in some kind of Freudian fantasy.
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