For something just as fictional and entertaining, but containing even sharper social commentary, try Vonnegut’s “Harrison Bergeron”. This short story link sparked by the comments to the post “Consider Phlebas” over at Pechorin’s Journal.
The Times inexplicably calls Dan Brown “the defining author of our time.”
The Chronicle of Higher Education has a top 10 list: What they’re reading on college campuses. It is slightly more heartening than the Dan Brown article.
The Virginia Quarterly Review has an interesting essay by Adam Kirsch titled “Lionel Trilling and Allen Ginsberg: Liberal Father, Radical Son”.
Kevin From Canada continues working his way through the Booker longlist providing excellent reviews as he goes. His latest review is of Sarah Hall’s How to Paint a Dead Man.
This last item is not really a favorite. The Guardian has reported disturbing revelations about William Golding. He “admitted in private papers that he had tried to rape a 15-year-old girl during his teenage years.” The article does not give enough detail to judge how horrid another poor decision was, but he apparently conducted Lord of the Flies like experiments with his students, having one group of boys attack another.
The question of whether a work of art (e.g. Lord of the Flies) is diminished by or ought to be judged in light of the fact that the creator is despicable are unfortunately newly relevant.