Sunday, December 30, 2007

it's the most wonderful time of the year

After Christmas, that is.

The hustle already fading, it's time when I can turn my fuller attention to 2008.
The Guardian gets first crack at the books to come.

Some have come out on this side of the pond already. On the other hand, not on their list is new work by Hari Kunzru and Jonathan Coe, already much discussed in Britain, but not due here for a few months yet.
I read Hari Kunzru's My Revolutions over Christmas and it's a strong effort.
I'm a sucker for anything political in the late 60s and early 70s. The period between the Tet Offensive and Nixon's resignation is very rich and as leftish sentiments cooled, it was a great place to park a good novel. Sigrid Nunez (The Last of Her Kind) Neil Gordon (The Company You Keep) and Doris Lessing (The Sweetest Dream) all hit it out of the park when they trod on that turf; indeed Doris Lessing did several times.
My Revolutions concerns Mike Frame/Chris Carver a man living in Blair-era Britain with an entrepreneurial girlfriend and her daughter by another man. Mike is a man whose buried his past, but Chris comes to the fore as he is shocked while on holiday; believing he's seen an accomplice from a botched bombing twenty years earlier. Political machinations within the Blair government stir up ghosts in Mike/Chris's past and he's forced to revisit his doppelganger again.
Hari Kunzru gets a lot right in My Revolutions and I trust it'll set up a good year.
Despite everything, here's to it.

Posted by Dave

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