Sunday, November 14, 2004

No wonder people hate critics

Deborah Friedell, assistant literary editor of The New Republic (aka "The Least Read Magazine in America You've Actually Heard Of"), is quite possibly the most obnoxious person in the literary firmament.

Want proof? Read her review of Michael Chabon's The Final Solution in today's New York Times.

Writing about crime fiction, she reports, "A genre that is by its nature so constrained, so untransgressive, seems unlikely to appeal to the real writer. Even Arthur Conan Doyle felt that his Sherlock Holmes mysteries occupied the 'lower stratum of literary achievement.' It's still true. We relegate the detective story to literature's fringes, alongside other unsavories -- stories of suspense, war, romance."

Where does the Times find these people? Are they grown in a lab somewhere?