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Thread: Martin Amis

  1. #1
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    United Kingdom Martin Amis

    No thread on Amis, yet several members have listed him as one of their top ten favorite authors.

    Anyway, Amis was recently profiled in the Los Angeles Review of Books by some melancholy Dane. I'm not a big fan of the author, but this was an excellent exposé.

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    Default Re: Martin Amis

    Thanks for the heads-up

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    Default Re: Martin Amis

    You're welcome: I especially liked the level-headedness of the piece, which didn't fall back on the usual hysterical accusations of misogyny, racism, homo- and Islamophobia in discussing Amis's work (as if they had anything to do with the man's books, whatever his beliefs in private life are). Interesting to see a Danish (?) journalist writing a piece for an American journal.

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    Denmark Re: Martin Amis

    From what I can find out from Danish websites is that Morten H. Jensen is indeed a Dane, a young blogger and critic living in New York who is beginning to become visible, but is not yet very well known in Denmark either. His review doesn't seem melancholy (is the melancholy Scandinavian a cliché?), but sober, as someone has suggested. It lacks the tiring superlatives of many reviews nowadays.
    Last edited by Eric; 29-Apr-2012 at 07:57.

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    Default Re: Martin Amis

    Too bad I'm moving OUT of Brooklyn, ain't it?

    Martin Amis Moves to Brooklyn, Sounds Like Jerk

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    Default Re: Martin Amis

    As you can read on the Wikipedia and elsewhere, Martin Amis is the son of a famous writer of Communist leanings, is himself very conservative (reaction to daddy), homophobic and a bit of an MCP. I've seen him talking on British TV where he sounds as if his powers of speech have been addled by smoking too much pot / dope / grass / marihuana, whatever. He is very opinionated. Although he is said to write sharp, intellectual novels, here is another author I'm simply put off by the image he projects.

    Why does he make such a big thing about living in Brooklyn? Maybe the Brits think good riddance, and he's now cultivating the Yankie market.

    I am not going to read him.

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    Default Re: Martin Amis

    I'm not sure "communist leanings" quite gets Kingsley Amis right - he was a fairly apolitical figure who didn't like foreigners much. If anything he leaned to the right. As for Martin, say what you like few people write better sentences...

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    Default Re: Martin Amis

    Quote Originally Posted by Hemmo View Post
    As for Martin, say what you like few people write better sentences...
    I can think of any number of writers who can produce better sentences than Amis, not least of all, John Banville, who's probably only a "dumb Paddy" in Martin's eyes, .

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    Default Re: Martin Amis

    Quote Originally Posted by Eric View Post
    I am not going to read him.
    Oh but you should read him, Eric. Don't fall prey to the idiotic leftist press, who've been trying to smear Amis for decades. He has a sarcastic sense of humor not unlike yours. I'm sure you'll love him.

    He's making no fuzz at all about moving to Brooklyn. Its the press that are blowing things out of proportion as usual. The reasons why he moved are simple: his wife wanted to be near her aging parents (her father has since passed away) + Martin wanted to be near his dying best friend Christopher Hitchens (also now dead).

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    Argentina Re: Martin Amis

    If ever Mrs Kirchner declares war on the oilfields, owned by a family, like the Ewings, called the Malweenies, Britain, by devious routes, will send its infiltratory secret agent, known only as Agent Aimless, to subvert the Argentinian cause by charm, wit, and a certain aplomb of spirit.

    As I keep declaring, I'm a rightie, not a leftie, but I'm highly suspicious of the media product that Amis Junior has been turned into. So if he is indeed a jolly good British writer, worthy of being read by Anglo-Argies, maybe my good countrymen will give him a one-way ticket to Borgesville-Aires (known as Gombrowiczczyzna in Polish circles), where the chap can discover other cultures beyond that of Brooklyn (Dutch name, by the way)..

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    Default Re: Martin Amis

    ^^OK, dude, I have NO clue what that means...

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    Default Re: Martin Amis

    Another piece about M. A.

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    Default Re: Martin Amis

    I don't know where you got the idea that Kingsley Amis was left wing. I'm younger than you, Eric, and I remember Kingsley Amis well; he was always on television, the curmudgeonly, right wing old sod. In his early teens and early 20s he thought of himself as left wing, but as soon as he realised that the people he hated were left wingers rather than right wingers as he'd always thought, he switched his political position. The funny thing is, the older Martin Amis gets the more he resembles his Dad, both in appearance and in political views.
    Reading made Don Quixote a gentleman. Believing what he read made him mad. - George Bernard Shaw

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    England Re: Martin Amis

    Here's more fun about Martin Amis:

    http://www.telegraph.co.uk/culture/b...rtin-Amis.html

    By the way, I don't know whether I've told you this before, but Kingsley "Martindad the Imbiber" Amis might very well have been a Commie:

    http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Kingsley_Amis

    Could, of course, have been a Trotskyist infiltrator, or some other silly billy. He was a friend of the famous feminist poet and cyclist Lilith Farkin, known as Philandress Farkin among her Hull contemporaries.

    But it's all jolly equivocal. Kingsley, despite his daft forename, wrote a good deal more than his son.

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    Default Re: Martin Amis

    I've only just begun reading Amis, same goes for Julian Barnes, so have no opionion on this writer, yes, a suspension of opinion on the fackin internet, rare indeed!

    I do know he's received some negative views about his latest novel, c/o The Sunday Times, Culture, whch more or less says Amis is not on form, unlike his earlier days when he wrote MONEY, and it seems he's never quite achieved that standard of sizzling prose, stopping to interject or opine on 'sizzling prose' -- is that writing as bacon, one of those beloved terms of literary reviewers. Deviating further, do we ever inwardly-digest, more culinary terms, personally I just read and enjoy good writing.

    Some bio: his background or early childhood appears to have been fairly chaotic, living in some fairly dirty and neglected pretty conditions, but he worked very hard at his A Levels and was incredibly bright, entered Oxford and eventually took a 1st, and was invited to lunch with his Professors as best student, he's fairly derisory about that whole experience. I've also caught him recently on Newsnight Review, or the Culture Show and he seems okay, he does have an intellectual elitism standpont, but he says of all of the sins, he feels that's an acceptable prejudice.

    He used to smoke quite heavily, but is now down to a mere 10 cigarettes per day, at least it's not speed, hey, ala P K Dick who used the drug to synaptically excel...

    I'd read Amis, the small amount I've looked at seemed very good, he can write, there's no doubt about that, but taste, is it for you, well, subjective innit.
    "In fact nothing is said that that has not been said before."

    -Terence



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    Default Re: Martin Amis

    My own home library is not vast, but I could literally list a hundred as yet unread books that I would rather read than anything by Amis Junior.

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    Default Re: Martin Amis

    I probably have a few hundred preferred choices/authors I'd put first Eric, before Amis Jnr, but I'd still probably give him a shot.

    It's good to read widely.

    I've even read some Will Self... probably much to your chagrin.

    Actually, his surname sounds not unlike the title of a self-help book.

    For your consideration:

    "WILL SELF TO EVER HIGHER FORMS OF ZEN CONTEMPLATION, FOR BEGINNERS"
    Last edited by Hamlet; 31-Aug-2012 at 20:19. Reason: clarify
    "In fact nothing is said that that has not been said before."

    -Terence



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    Default Re: Martin Amis

    Recent interview in the Capital.

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    Default Re: Martin Amis

    I posted this about Amis in some other thread:

    "Amis is one of those writers whose personal antics attract more attention than their writing. Personally, Amis's teeth, family life, political ideas... don't interest me at all.

    The problem with Amis is something that has happened before to a lot of successful men: he is very good at one thing, and then he comes to think that he is very good at everything. He went to Oxford, and he is very well read in English language literature. He has produced some interesting criticism (The War Against Cliché), and he would have made a good literature teacher. As a writer of fiction, he has a comic gift, like his father - there are memorably comical moments in, for example, Dead Babies, although his humour tends to be nasty - the sort of humour based on someone getting humiliated or hurt, or both. All in all, he has written a promising novel (Success), a passably good one (Money), and a lot of worthless pretentious stuff.

    As a political commentator, he knows very little, he has very simple, almost childish, ideas, and his self-confidence is endless - a perfect recipe for disaster.

    Not to be taken seriously".
    Last edited by Flint; 31-Aug-2012 at 19:30.

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    Default Re: Martin Amis

    Interesting post Flint, I'll probably pick up a few of his books, soonish, because I'd like to get an angle on him now. Today, instead, I picked up Lucky Jim.
    "In fact nothing is said that that has not been said before."

    -Terence



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