Is it true that there is an App for my iPhone which is capable of generating, in the manner of Ad-Libs, a passable novel capable of selling for $4.99 at the biggest online bookstore? It must be true. That book seller tries to get me to read these hollow weinies every month by conveniently offering free samples, like a drug dealer.
Have you read any of these titles? Do they have real authors?
Okay, I’m a literary snob. I was educated to understand and appreciate poetry and other sublime literature. I find science fiction tedious but detective stories fun and engaging. Ulysses goes with me to the islands but I also revere Pope, Milton, and Flaubert. Somewhere along my life I stopped watching television, drinking beer, and worshipping sports figures. I read too much but also have found time for the newer short-form online series, but no fantasy or science fiction. I have reconstructed the memory of every sexual encounter going back to the late 1950s and in each case have noted where I went wrong or how much further I could have gone.
I’m old and a tad out of date.
But the crap being foisted on the reading public today is sad. I would go so far as to suggest that the current big-box online bookseller is doing more to shave points off the nation’s literary I.Q. than Carlton Mellick III. An episode of Little Annie Fannie has more literate content that a whole month’s worth of free fiction from Amazon. Who said there wasn’t a market for pedestrian fiction that is not thought well-enough of even to fund self-publishing?
Is Amazon the new Vanity Press?
I’m pretty sure all these titles can be found on Amazon. but does this month’s reading list contain any.duds of the $4.99 variety?
- A Man Called Ove: A Novel — Fredrik Backman
- Drop City — T. C. Boyle
- Lost Light — Michael Connelly
- The Empty Chair — Jeffrey Deaver
- Siege of Krishnapur – J. G. Farrell
- A Column of Fire — Ken Follett
- Independence Day— Richard Ford
- Château d’Argol — Julien Gracq
- The Princess Cassamassima— Henry James
- The Dark Horse — Craig Johnson
- Who Killed Palomino Molero — Mario Vargas Llosa
- Robert B. Parker’s Fool’s Paradise — Mike Lupica
- Beowulf For Cretins: A Love Story — Ann McMan
- The Prestige — Christopher Priest
- The Captive — Marcel Proust
- Red Mandarin Dress — Qiu Xiaolong
- The President’s Gardens — Muhsin Al-Ramli
- Lincoln In the Bardo — George Saunders
- Red Square — Martin Cruz Smith
- Cryptonomicon — Neal Stephenson