9 of 9 people found the following review helpful
A hit-and-miss affair,
This review is from: Yeats Is Dead (Paperback)
Yeats Is Dead is based around an interesting idea: a novel written by 15 different Irish authors. Telling the story about the chase for a manuscript written by James Joyce called Y8s =?!, the book reveals a plethora of odd-ball characters and plenty of twists and turns as it progresses.
The opening chapter, by Roddy Doyle, is flawless, and sets a high bar against which all the other authors are judged. Whilst there remains some fine writing within the book, it can occasionally be hit and miss. Pauline McLynne and Frank McCourt appear battle for the accolade of worst chapter: McLynne’s chapter takes a umber of totally implausible twists and turns, even within the surreal nature of the book, whilst McCourt ensures the book ends with a whimper rather than a bang.
Another problem with the book is that the authors appear to compete with other: for the first half of the book each chapter begins with a sketch of a new character: each author presumably keen to leave their mark on the book. The ginger MC is a particularly fine invention, but the competition becomes wearing towards the end.
However, Yeats Is Dead is definitely worth investigation. It is an interesting experiment, and it does rattle along at a fair old pace. There are moments of genuine humour, and there are some genuinely amusing creations. An interesting experiment, and whilst it doesn’t deliver completely, it is entertaining none-the-less.