October 08, 2005

On Beauty

Recently finished Zadie Smith's new book, On Beauty. I never read White Teeth, which I hear is fabulous, so I don't have much to compare it to, but I did like it on its own. I was kind of pissed that I didn't know that the structure was based on Howard's End until the last chapter, though. What kind of fricking English MA am I not to have recognized that? God.

Personal failings aside, to be honest, I don't have that much to say about this book. Maybe I'm just tired, but I don't have a lot of analysis to offer on this one. I enjoyed it. I like the way the author tells a story without spelling every single thing out for you. She does not assume her readers need help figuring details out. And the characters were well-drawn, and believable. I have nothing in common with a middle-aged white British man, or a solid, maternal African-American woman in her 50s (our main characters), but they easily drew me in and were sympathetic.

Anyway, I liked it enough that I would recommend it, and I will definitely put White Teeth on my list.

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