Friday, August 10, 2012
The New Republic by Lionel Shriver
I'm a big fan of Lionel Shriver's writing. I haven't read all of her books, but several. I'm currently reading The New Republic. It's about terrorism and she wrote it a few years before 2001. It didn't get published then and immediately after 9/11, it couldn't get published, so 11 years later, it's okay again to have a book about terrorism. That is, a humorous book about terrorism.
So far, so good. She is such an excellent writer: smart, funny, way over my head at least half the time but down to earth enough that when I get it, it's good and I don't feel dumb, just ignorant of her references. I'm not a worldly type person. She is obviously. And that's okay.
So, last night I read these paragraphs, which, you guessed it, one of them contains lint. So here goes:
Edgar could only intuit vaguely that they had money troubles.
"Barrington understood," she added sadly. "But Barrington collected meaning like lint. Like that Peanuts character: it followed him in a cloud."
If you've never read any of Lionel Shriver's books, do yourself a favor. Do. I wouldn't recommend starting with We Need to Talk About Kevin though. It's her deepest, darkest and very good but so scary in the subject matter. Most of her others are more tongue in cheek and a delight.