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Aug 03, 2013 MJ Nicholls rated it liked it · review of another edition
In this mannered novel Sheed explores the loneliness of a religious periodical writer whose crisis of faith scuppers his role as breadwinner in a typical 1950s household of five-kids-and-a-Betty. The prose is elegant, but the plot thinner than the line-up at a Kate Moss lookalike convention, and the characters are drearily lifelike. Multiple POVs adds a little variety to the convention, and the prose is witty and smirk-making most of the time. The Hack is an interesting novel about a writer whos ...more
I really wanted to like this book because of its premise. It sounded like something I could relate to on a lot of levels. The first part of the book was really good. But when the POV shifted to the wife in the middle, it lost me. Again, I don't want to pan this book because I liked the premise, but it went on too long for the idea in my opinion. It needed more plot to move things along. Still, this was written well enough I would try a different book by him.
Even more depressing - but more memorable - than Max Jamison, the story of a professional writer of Catholic parish newsletters in the 50s and HIS hell. Not to be forgotten portrait of a gray man - and a vivid portrait of the Catholic intellectual circa 1955 - a now extinct species much fancied by young goy-chasers of the mid-twentieth century.
Sheed was born in London to Francis "Frank" Sheed and Mary "Maisie" Ward, prominent Roman Catholic publishers (Sheed & Ward) in the United Kingdom and the United States during the mid-20th century. Wilfrid Sheed spent his childhood in both England and the United States before attending Downside School and Lincoln College, Oxford where he earned BA (1954) and MA (1957) degrees.More about Wilfrid Sheed...