Find out why he is considered a leading social critic of his generation. In a series of intriguing essays, he provides a passionate commentary on literature and elements of popular culture. Opening with a celebration of Keith Moon, The Who's legendary drummer, he moves effortlessly to a critique of Leo Tolstoy and Thomas Hardy with direct comparisons to modern writers such as Cormac McCarthy and Lydia Davis. This is a collection of work for anyone who is interested in contemporary literature.
Following The Broken Estate, The Irresponsible Self, and How Fiction Works books that established James Wood as the leading critic of his generation The Fun Stuff confirms Wood s pre-eminence, not only as a discerning judge but also as an appreciator of the contemporary novel. In twenty-three passionate, sparkling dispatches that range over such crucial writers as Thomas Hardy, Leo Tolstoy, and Edmund Wilson Wood offers a panoramic look at the modern novel. He effortlessly connects his encyclopaedic, eloquent understanding of the literary canon with an equally in-depth analysis of the most important authors writing today, including Cormac McCarthy, Kazuo Ishiguro, and V.S. Naipaul. Included in The Fun Stuff are the title essay on Keith Moon and the lost joys of drumming which was a finalist for last year s National Magazine Awards as well as Wood s essay on George Orwell, which Christopher Hitchens selected for the Best American Essays 2010. The Fun Stuff is indispensable reading for anyone who cares about contemporary literature.