MJ Nicholls's Reviews > The Book of Other People

The Book of Other People by Zadie Smith
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Sep 07, 10

bookshelves: short-stories, sassysassenachs, merkins, art-or-illustrated
Read in September, 2010

As other esteemed Goodreaders have opined, this anthology fails to deliver consistent excellence, despite the all-star cast.

The best contributions are from Hari Kunzru, Daniel Clowes, ZZ Packer, Chris Ware, Nick Hornby, Miranda July & Jonathan Lethem. These stories kept my arse welded to the chair, with zero distracted fidgety impatience.

The others are merely average: fragments, unfinished doodles or tossed-off oddities. Jonathan Safran Foer, hardly a prolific short story writer, seems to have mailed in a high-school piece.

Only two stories, by A.M. Homes & Colm Tóibín, are snoozy tripe.

I don't know what to suggest, really. It is for charity. I bought my copy in a charity shop, thus contributing to two charities simulatenously. Go me.
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