File Under, Wrongheaded

So, Slate’s book coverage has pretty much been dead to me since the inept savagery of Karen Joy Fowler’s The Jane Austen Book Club. If that hadn’t done it, I’m sure this would have.

Now comes the proud proclamation that Octavian Nothing actually sucks–really, we’ve all just been snowed. We like a good sermon, apparently. (Although she gets points for referencing Matt’s review.) 

Or maybe such reactionary book coverage isn’t worth the pixels it’s printed in.

5 thoughts on “File Under, Wrongheaded”

  1. Octavian Nothing is the best book I’ve read so far this year. Horrific, yes, and exhilarating, yes, and yes, emotionally wrenching.
    The piece on Slate was mysterious, inept, peevish, and genuinely clueless about YA literature. The assertion about young adults not reading young adult literature was particularly screwy. So were the bits about Octavian Nothing being didactic. The only thing that rang true was the paragraph or so about it not particularly mattering whether a book was good or bad when you were obsessed with a particular subject matter. I suspect this is always true, to a certain degree.
    I did spend some time wondering what I would have thought of Octavian Nothing when I was fourteen or fifteen, but Holly Black and I were talking about this and she’s convinced me that the voice of the character would have pulled me right in. I loved (and still love) T. H. White. I went through all the Tolkien extras when I had read the trilogy to bits. Even John Myers Myers wasn’t too much for me when I was young and patient. And the great thing about getting older, of course, is that you get more than one shot at a book. I missed Tove Jansson the first time around, but caught up eventually.

  2. The one piece on Slate that I’ve loved with all my heart was Dana Steven’s compilation of reader-suggested movie titles that worked on the same principle as Snakes on a Plane. The Creature Waits in the Structure was one, and another was How Can I Prevent This Alarming Thing From Happening to Me?

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