Harry Who?

July 30th, 2007 at 6:24 pm

I’m a fan of any essay that employs any of the following phrases: “cultural and social retardation” & “twentysomething teenagers” & “literary terrorism.”  What is popular isn’t always good? Really?



The Assassins’ Gate: America in Iraq” by George Packer

July 30th, 2007 at 4:26 pm

As the latest of many, many debacles in Iraq continue to be waged, I recently finished George Packer’s fantastic book on the war’s early, unfortunately very similar blunders. Published in 2005, but only recently in my hands due to its availability as a hardcover bargain book, I feared that its content would be outdated and irrelevant. I was (sadly) very wrong.In the book’s Epilogue, Mr. Packer reaches this eerie, resonating conclusion: “The Iraq War was always winnable; it still is. For this very reason, the recklessness of its authors is all the harder to forgive.”



“The Assassins’ Gate: America in Iraq” by George Packer

July 30th, 2007 at 4:26 pm

As the latest of many, many debacles in Iraq continue to be waged, I recently finished George Packer’s fantastic book on the war’s early, unfortunately very similar blunders.

Published in 2005, but only recently in my hands due to its availability as a hardcover bargain book, I feared that its content would be outdated and irrelevant. I was (sadly) very wrong.

In the book’s Epilogue, Mr. Packer reaches this eerie, resonating conclusion: “The Iraq War was always winnable; it still is. For this very reason, the recklessness of its authors is all the harder to forgive.”



“The Cult of the Amateur: How Today’s Internet is Killing our Culture” by Andrew Keen

July 30th, 2007 at 4:08 pm

What an inciteful title! Evidently, this Silicon Valley entreprenuer argues in his new book that “what the Web 2.0 revolution is really delivering
is superficial observations of the world around us rather than deep
analysis, shrill opinion rather than considered judgment.” The New York Times’ review of the book quotes Keen as insisting that, “‘history has proven that the crowd is not often very wise,’ embracing unwise ideas like ‘slavery, infanticide, George W. Bush’s war in Iraq, Britney Spears.” Mr. Keen, good sir, I will give you slavery, infanticide, and George W. Bush’s war in Iraq. But you leave Britney out of this!



“The Cult of the Amateur: How Today’s Internet is Killing our Culture” by Andrew Keen

July 30th, 2007 at 4:08 pm

What an inciteful title!

Evidently, this Silicon Valley entreprenuer argues in his new book that “what the Web 2.0 revolution is really delivering
is superficial observations of the world around us rather than deep
analysis, shrill opinion rather than considered judgment.”

The New York Times’ review of the book quotes Keen as insisting that, “‘history has proven that the crowd is not
often very wise,’ embracing unwise ideas like ‘slavery, infanticide, George W. Bush’s war in Iraq, Britney Spears.’”

Mr. Keen, good sir, I will give you slavery, infanticide, and George W. Bush’s war in Iraq.

But you leave Britney out of this!



Rowling Still Rolling

July 27th, 2007 at 6:48 pm

Harry Potter author J.K. Rowling has said she is back at work, just days after her final Harry Potter book was published.

The author said she was sad the Harry Potter series had come to an end, but would not stop writing. “I’m sort of writing two things at the moment,” she said. “One is for children and the other is not for children.”

J.K. Rowling write something that doesn’t involve wizards? That would be like Banksy switching to sculpture.



Author Nicole Richie Goes to Jail

July 27th, 2007 at 5:34 pm

The author of “The Truth About Diamonds: A Novel,” was sentenced to jail today: Nicole Richie sentenced, fined for DUI.

Nicole Richie’s publisher insists that, “In her electrifying first novel, Nicole Richie tells the sensational
story of Chloe Parker, a rock royalty princess and a card-carrying
member of Hollywood’s inner circle. At the age of seven, Chloe was
adopted by a music superstar and his wife, transforming her life from
rags to riches. What followed was a wild childhood distinguished by
parties with movie stars and rock idols, run-ins with the press and the
police, and a subsequent stint in rehab.”

Drugs, yes. A novel, no.

Writers come from a long, storied lineage of heavy drinkers and hard drug users. I’m fine with your drug use, Nicole, but please stop writing. And driving. You’re going to hurt/insult someone/everyone.

And as if putting the words “A Novel” in the actual title wasn’t enough, the paperback edition has “A Novel” written six times underneath the title. The copyright page insists that, “This book is a work of fiction. The characters, incidents, and dialogue are drawn from the author’s imagination and are not to be construed as real. Any resemblance to atual events or persons, living or dead, is entirely coincidental.”

Drugs, indeed.

God, I hope LiLo writes a book.



Rowling Still Rolling

July 27th, 2007 at 11:48 am

Harry Potter author J.K. Rowling has said she is back at work, just days after her final Harry Potter book was published.

The author said she was sad the Harry Potter series had come to an end, but would not stop writing. “I’m sort of writing two things at the moment,” she said. “One is for children and the other is not for children.”

J.K. Rowling write something that doesn’t involve wizards? That would be like Banksy switching to sculpture.



Author Nicole Richie Goes to Jail

July 27th, 2007 at 10:24 am

The author of “The Truth About Diamonds: A Novel,” was sentenced to jail today: Nicole Richie sentenced, fined for DUI.

Nicole Richie’s publisher insists that, “In her electrifying first novel, Nicole Richie tells the sensational story of Chloe Parker, a rock royalty princess and a card-carrying member of Hollywood’s inner circle. At the age of seven, Chloe was adopted by a music superstar and his wife, transforming her life from rags to riches. What followed was a wild childhood distinguished by parties with movie stars and rock idols, run-ins with the press and the police, and a subsequent stint in rehab.”

Drugs, yes. A novel, no.

Writers come from a long, storied lineage of heavy drinkers and hard drug users. I’m fine with your drug use, Nicole, but please stop writing. And driving. You’re going to hurt/insult someone/everyone.

And as if putting the words “A Novel” in the actual title wasn’t enough, the paperback edition has “A Novel” written six times underneath the title. The copyright page insists that, “This book is a work of fiction. The characters, incidents, and dialogue are drawn from the author’s imagination and are not to be construed as real. Any resemblance to atual events or persons, living or dead, is entirely coincidental.”

Drugs, indeed.

God, I hope LiLo writes a book.