Top critical review
4 people found this helpful
Not for me - yet!
on 11 July 2006
I have read several of Howard Jacobson's books in the past and really enjoyed his humour and language.
I picked this book up several times to try to read it - a page turner it is not.
I had no real empathy for the main character, Henry Nagel, and never really warmed to him. Not that he was bad or evil just unsympathetic. Every few fages I would get fed up with his self-pity and put it down... I struggled with it.
Perhaps I'm not old enough yet to feel empathy with a 60 year-old underachiever. I rarely grinned, never mind laugh out loud as I have with his other books.
As for the plot! Coincidences pepper the plot in an attempt to increase Henry's comic confusion - does not help the reader. Moira falling for him... I think HJ is having a bit of wish fulfilment here.
Sorry HJ, maybe I'll get the joke later!