Skios By Michael Frayn
What particular qualification do I have to offer my opinion on this book? I’ve given no indication here. Do you believe my opinion is valid? Does it inform your own view, either pre- or post- your own reading? Have I even read it? How plausible would my little paragraph need to be to convince you? Am I really who I say (or don’t say) I am?
It would be interesting to know how the planning of this novel went; how much was meticulously laid out, or how little, and whether the process involved reaching certain strategic points and asking, ‘What could possibly go wrong?’
Very funny, and very clever.
Amsterdam by Ian McEwan
There’s a satisfying neatness about this story, a sort of verbal comfort factor that is accentuated by the succinct nature of the tale. It’s all about the precision in the plot, the impressive timing of events, coupled with the enduring delusion of the two main protagonists who believe themselves at the top of their game.
…Nights At The Circus by Angela Carter
What an opening chapter! Amazingly vivid, almost sapid it’s so finely drawn. Fevvers’s voice rings so true I can hear the pattern of her speech, as clear as Bow’s famous bells.
Angela Carter’s imagination takes full flight as the tale unfolds, and she presents for us the procession of human interaction. With a protagonist who is born to be on top, it’s a fascinating journey through the varied attempts to dominate or oppress the irrepressible.