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Should be a lot of fun to read. I’m doing that right now.

Live blogging my responses… Okay, we both love DeLillo. Our lists of books of his that we don’t love (we love most but not all of him) are pretty similar, but I disagree about The Names. It took me a number of rereadings to warm up to this oddball, philosophically ambitious, beautifully written novel, but it’s now gotten to the point where I feel ardor for it. I understand why Amis – why anyone – would have trouble with The Names – it can feel portentous, pretentious, as it digs down for spiritual meanings – but it’s actually a grounded and compassionate inquiry into the human soul.

The phrase “midnight in Dostoevsky,” we’re told, comes from a poem, and is probably intended to conjure some epiphany of willed despair.

Well, I tell you what the poem is, and offer some analysis of it and its connection to the story, here.


[It] is his general receptivity to the rhythms and atmospheres of the future that we should value… [T]he gods have equipped DeLillo with the antennae of a visionary.


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3 Responses to “Wow – an essay about Don DeLillo by Martin Amis.”

  1. dmf Says:

    thanks I’ll check this out later, I liked the Names but just finished Cosmopolis which took some awful/cartoonish turns ruining an interesting thread of thought/image.

  2. steven augustine Says:

    Re: (the brilliant) Cosmopolis: think: Jonathan Swift.

  3. steven augustine Says:

    Meanwhile: Poor Mart! I remember reading Experience and thinking: “He’s already doing his victory lap…!” Then Yellow Dog came out and Bellow died (not that I mean to imply causation, there) and it’s been downhill… with occasional lateral digressions… ever since.

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