The best laid plans: I'd hoped to get Old Media Monday out to devoted readers this week, but I'm afraid I'm no match for Tom when it comes to reviewing the reviewers. If you skipped out of town last holiday weekend and should still be catching up on your book news, I offer you in its place a condensed version (and a question--is anyone not convinced that they must stop everything they're reading and start The Scarecrow?):
- "That keening voice you hear in The Scarecrowbelongs to a Michael Connelly you may not know," writes Marilyn Stasio at the New York Times.Entertainment Weekly also weighs in with a grade of A-minus, saying that "what drive his story are not the vivid action scenes but the more
internal clue-reading of his heroes as they piece together the
ingenious mystery plots. The Scarecrow certainly reads like a movie "” but it's one that unfolds not just in your mind's eye but primarily in your mind." But theLA Times' coverage is easily the most persuasive: "Connelly always has been frank about his admiration for Raymond
Chandler. It's a high bar to set for oneself, but he comes as close to
clearing it as any mystery writer of his generation."
- Kakutani on John Updike's My Father's Tears and Endpoint: "he sticks here to what he does best: memorializing the mundane, the ordinary
joys and sorrows and confusions of suburban middle class life, the
quiet ticktock of human life as the 20th century unfurled...."
- Laura Miller on Walter Kirn's memoir, Lost in the Meritocracy: "No one could be harder on the youthful Kirn than he is on himself; he
has to be....You can't dish that stuff out unless you're
willing to take most of it, at least not without making yourself
hateful to your readers."
- Jonathan Yardley on Colm Toibin's Brooklyn: a modest novel, but it has heft...and a universality that goes far beyond the specific details of Eilis's struggle." (Also "Briefly Noted" by The New Yorker: "Purging the immigrant novel of all swagger and sentimentality, TÃ³ibÃn
leaves us with a renewed understanding that to emigrate is to become a
foreigner in two places at once.")
- Entertainment Weekly on I'm Down by Mishna Wolff (A): "All of Wolff's experiences funnel into this buoyant memoir, which is rich in detail but never feels overembellished."
Our book-loving President: We've enjoyed some Obama-with-book sightings in the last year, so it comes as no surprise that the President and First Lady have now stepped up to host this year's National Book Festival on September 26 [via The Daily Beast].
And just in case you forgot: Dave Eggers is pretty awesome. --Anne