Elnathan John, Born on a Tuesday. I wrote this on Twitter, which seems enough: Finished Elnathan John’s novel Born on a Tuesday yesterday. Very powerful, great straightforward prose, keen insights. A tiny bit derivative of Allah n’est pas obligé but let’s call it sampling… Really worth reading. Guardian review here.
John LeCarre, A Legacy of Spies. Opened well, gripped me, until started to get maudlin and unintelligible towards the end. When the great “love of your life” is someone you only meet once, and pass an “enchanted” night with her, you know you are in the hands of some British dude-guy whose idea of men and women and their relationships was shaped by some Anglican cleric who was never in a relationship.
F. Scott Fitzgerald short story, Babylon Revisited. A couple of drunks from Charlie’s past ruin his plan to take back his daughter. I’m happy for the daughter, who will grow up idolizing “Dads” and hating “Aunt,” and thus be able to write interesting short stories when she majors in English at Barnard. That isn’t fair to “Scottie” but there it is.
A&P by John Updike. I had read this before, several times. But it captures something essential about white middle American life in the mid 1960s….