Top critical review
on 17 January 2015
Struggled with this. Loved "Civilwarland in Bad Decline" and "Pastoralia" - a genuinely new satirical voice taking funny and often surreal shots at American sacred cows. This, however, is too dense at times, and seems wilfully weird and abstract, and mostly fails to find the sweet spot we know he can work in. There are some interesting, clever ideas, but they don't really come off with the kind of style I would expect, and a couple of the stories were actually boring - reminded me a bit of the kind of "wacky" attempt at humour you sometimes see in an Aaron Sorkin teleplay. Somewhat disappointing, given my previous experience, and the enormous amount of critical praise and prizes this collection has received.