Friday, October 15, 2010
Douglas Coupland - "Player One"
Coming back with some intent to keep this current, so we'll see how this goes and lasts...
Coupland's latest (from the Massey Lecture Series - a fine institution in reading) is a marginal 'steak knives', which is about par for him over the last several years. It used to be that I felt every second book he released was liner for a bird cage, but he's slipping... (I skipped "Generation A.")
I've read a few comparisons to Vonnegut in reviews of this 'novel in 5 hours', but I'd only agree insofar as it's a pale and inferior imitation, and only in spurts. Vonnegut was a great thinker, but not a great writer. I'd say writer and storyteller are two different skills, and Vonnegut clearly delivers on the later. Coupland is neither here, in this quasi-end-of-the-world piece. I just don't buy into his characters, as is often the problem with his writing. They just don't come across as plausible or human.
I'm not sure what the Giller judges are sniffing/smoking, but this really is mediocre.
I think I'm off Coupland for good. Still, here's the Amazon link if you'd like to find out more...