Saturday, August 02, 2008

We of the Nether Nether

Well well well, what a surprise, a veritable bobby-dazzler for the first station of the cross in this year's Bookerathon - Joseph O'Neill's Netherland. Just my favorite sort of novel is all, a sweet murder mystery love story covering off New York, London, big business, cricket, cooking, cute lawyers, 9/11, Eros, Google Earth, the Chelsea hotel, the odd angel, and all of it neatly packaged in a dreamy, stylish first person narrative with plenty of purple patches. So good it's tempting to give O'Neill my personal Booker here and now and skip the rest, but for one slight problem - we never get to learn whodunnit. That may be just one genre transgression too many. Or have I missed a crucial subtext?

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