Jamie VW's Reviews > Publish and Perish: Three Tales of Tenure and Terror

Publish and Perish by James Hynes
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M 50x66
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Jun 24, 2012

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Read from June 17 to 24, 2012

I almost stopped after the first novella, which I found to be complete dreck (as my grandfather would say). Mean-spirited, contrived and poorly conceived, I had to force myself into the second book. That one, titled 99, was much better - not fantastic, but intriguing in its critique of anthropology and is reminiscent of The Lottery and Borges' The Gospel According to Mark. The third book, Casting the Runes, is actually quite good, a pastiche as Hynes puts it of a story from M.R. James. It uses the all too common problem of advisers terrorizing their grad students - having their academic lives in their hands - and spins out a horror story from there. Clever. So if I have to recommend, I'd say check this book out of the library and stick to the third book, read the second one if you have a spare hour or two.
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