It’s easy to hate on Twilight and The Hunger Games, but there is something eminently readable about both. Clear, simplistic language and heroic, one-dimensional characters cuddle a lazy reader, enticing attention typically reserved for soap operas and professional wrestling. On the flip side, however, are the authors everyone feels they ought to like, but don’t. […]
Whenever I’m on the fence about buying a book, I turn to page 1 and read its opening line. Considering the amount of time authors spend obsessing over the first words of their tome, you’d think all openings would be amazing. And yet, they’re not. Constructing an original, provocative opening sentence is eons harder than […]
Sinister villains often make good books – after all, it is frequently in the defeat of such adversaries that heroes prove heroic. For this reason, one could make a Top 10 Heroes List that closely mirrors that of the villains – and wind up including Pip, Hamlet, Charles Darnay and Uncle Tom among others. A […]
Even if someone has read this, it was back in high school, and all they remember is Ahab being mad at a white whale that bit off his leg and that the first mate was named after a chain of gourmet coffee shops. If you need to provide yourself cover, loftily say something such as, “It oft seems that all great works of literature are ultimately based on the allegories of the Talmud.” That should send them scurrying off to the bar.