June 4, 2010


This morning I finished reading Martin Amis, The Pregnant Widow: A Novel (New York: Knopf, 2010). This afternoon the New York Review of Books arrived, and held within its pages is Edmund White's review, "More Lad Than Bad," NYRB (6/24/2010,Volume LVII, Number 11). White writes, "Keith Nearing is more lad than bad in The Pregnant Widow--and by the end of the book he has clearly matured, if that means to have grown bleak with insights and depressing wisdom. Amis's readers will be delighted by this return to form--that is, a new depth brought to familiar themes. And no one can deny the superb writing throughout, the attention to detail and to language lavished on every sentence. At one point close to the present Keith wonders if beauty has gone out of the world; if it did, it has just reentered literature through this strange, sparking novel." Id. at 16. Real beauty is rare in our commercialized, commodified, sterilized, bureaucratized, thirty-seconds-attention-spanned, pop-up society; so grab it, gaze upon it, read it, etc., when you can.