March 27, 2009
Bolaño, N+1 - The Bad and Ugly
Two slightly contrasting pieces from N+1, which have been around for a while, both of which seem as interested in the US "canonization" of the dead Chilean as they do in the work. There's a proper bit of Devil's Advocacy going on here, though this one decides he's worth it and this one decides he ain't. Full marks for contrarian zeal, but I can't help feeling that the "No" camp gets a little carried away, making much of what a hard read the book is and spouting this kind of vile insult: "2666 is a desert of negative space covered with smudges and chaotic scrawls." To me that just makes it sound even better. Maybe that's where I part company from both the sanctifiers and hired oppositionalists.