Particularly brutal reviews are an art form in themselves, and this review of James Frey's new book is a delightful contemporary example. The book Frey wrote is no doubt shit, but this review is not to be missed.
I only wish we'd see more of this in book reviewing. Frey is taking it on the chin because, having betrayed the trust of readers everywhere -- and, more importantly, Oprah -- he doesn't get the fluff-n-buff most obscenely bad writers are treated to by the likes of yer NY establishment reviewer. The writing quoted here is genuinely bad, but equally bad writing has been praised in this same newspaper, and the difference has everything to do with the social status of the author in the NY writing and publishing circles and nothing to do with the actual quality of the work. It's nice to see shitty writing called out as such. If we start calling a cockroach a cockroach, there's a chance the extermination might eventually begin.