Wednesday, October 10, 2007

Reviews Gone Bad?

I'm reading That Hideous Strength - so far a very engaging book. A couple of the reviews on the back cover, though, don't seem to be in touch with reality. Time magazine, it says, called the book a "well-written, fast-paced satirical fantasy" (emphasis added).


Maybe I'm just dumb, but I don't see how this is "satirical." I'm much more inclined to believe that our reviewer was one of those moderns who might have been the target of the book. The same goes for the New York Times reviewer who called it "biting wit" and "superlatively nonsensical." I don't have any idea what they are talking about. Surely there are a few good jokes in the book - Lewis had a good sense of humor as far as I'm concerned. But to call it "nonsensical" is just ... nonsensical. To his credit, though, the NYT reviewer did at least recognize that the book holds "challenging implications." I just wonder if we'd agree as to what those implications are.

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