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Great post. It often seems that reviewers like Miller, not the "average" readers she condescends to, are the ones looking for guidance in what to read. So large print runs, "major" publishers, and glossy pre-pub materials create an echo chamber effect whereby reviewers can decide, "This must be a 'significant' book because the publisher says so. I'll give it a big splashy review that will show how wonderful my literary acumen is."

Thanks for this Daniel. This is enough to make me boycott Salon.com, whose "Books" section now runs a distant second to the absurdities that the Huffington Post pops up with.

There are so many things to respond to in Miller's piece, but I'll limit myself to observing that it's axiomatic that readers who "can find time for only two or three new novels per year" are probably the least discriminating readers of all.

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About

  • Daniel Green is a literary critic and sometime fiction writer. His reviews, critical essays, and fiction have appeared in a variety of publications, both online and in print. He has a Ph.D focusing on postwar American fiction and an M.A. in creative writing.