Posts Tagged ‘Argh’

Update on Freedom

Sunday, September 5th, 2010

I am nearing half way through this book and the thought of reading more is giving me hives. I dislike this book. It’s boring. I don’t like the characters, I hate Patty Bergland, who I find completely unconvincing as a human being — she’s cardboard; constructed to fit the author’s needs. I don’t believe for a nanosecond that Franzen bothered to ask himself whether he understands anything about being a woman. Five minutes on Google would have sent him to dozens of sites where women speak cogently about what it’s like to be a woman in America. He doesn’t understand that rape is about more than the physical violence, it’s about the emotional damage. My God, I hate this book. I don’t understand how anyone can call this a work of genius. I really don’t.

I also hate Walter Bergland. And Richard Katz. They are effing boring me to DEATH. And please don’t mistake my use of the characters’ names for some kind of subtle suggestion that they are fully realized characters. They’re as cardboard as Patty. Oh god I just don’t care about this book and I don’t want to keep reading.

It isn’t brilliant. Not in any sense of the word. I’m still spitting mad. And now I’m also spitting mad that books that DO represent a woman’s life are “Chick Lit” and populist and not worthy of critical assessment. I’m starting to agree that Franzen is right ;Mikiko Kakutani must be the stupidest person in America to call this book brilliant.

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