Edi's Reviews > The Sportswriter

The Sportswriter by Richard Ford
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M 50x66
's review
Jun 09, 2012

it was ok

It was my fault that, before I started reading Richard Ford's "The Sportswriter", I've had some pretty big expectations from it. On my edition's back cover were a few favorable reviews, that, amongst other things, were comparing Ford to John Updike. Since I've been a sucker for Updike ever since I read his "Centaur", I thought this was gonna be great. Sadly, I was wrong.
After the first chapter, I was thrown in this small, sad, surreal suburb of New Jersey, where a middle aged melancholic man is intertwining his present with his past, in an attempt to make better sense of the mess that is his life.
Now, if you don't know me, you should know that I love "little America", "life behind the white fences" novels; not the sensational, tabloid-like ones, with scandals and what-not, but the ones that speak about the Big, yet vulnerable spirit of the Great Ole' Red, White and Blue, the Wounded Eagle. Comparing this very book to that is like comparing the Super Bowl with the golf game on Sunday afternoon. Its slow pace does not improve its style, it doesn't give you any feeling, any ideas, doesn't awake anything. Nada. Zilch. It's just the ramblings of Average Joe about life, love and the American Dream, all between a Thanksgiving meal and Christmas (if I recall correctly). A hollow man, with a stale story, and a sad song await you between the pages. Reading the last words, while still hoping it would achieve something, anything, was a true liberation. Letting go of a thread that was never going to get anywhere.

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