Another William Dean Howells fan--yay! IMHO, Howells should be at least as venerated as Edith Wharton if not quite as much as Henry James.And I'm totally with Ozick regarding yet another biography of Hitler: "sometimes psychological curiosity is no more illuminating than pornography." Indeed! If I could tell her anything, it would be to chuck out that book unread. I would not want the oppressive feeling I would get knowing I was using up previous reading time on that monster. How much more do we really need to know about him?
I've read my share of James, and I'm not a fan. I feel much the same about Wharton. I like the Howells books I've read, but the sample is small. I'm not curious at all about Hitler.
Ozick comes out of ad agency copywriting. Nobody uses semicolons as often as she does. In small doses, her writing is okay. As for James, he is a master of dialogue & personal direction. ("He walked across the room.") It is all that boring stuff in-between!!
Speaking of Hitler, of the 100+ books I took to Powell's the only one they bought was Mein Kampf. Or Mien Kampf, however it's spelled.
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