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About The daily Nebraskan. ([Lincoln, Neb.) 1901-current | View Entire Issue (Sept. 26, 1973)
Every writer's recipe for ridiculous reviews
The criteria I use for reviewing books has been
handed down in my family for generations. They
were developed by my great-great grandfather,
Mortimer Boolschootter Jr., who reviewed books for
the New York Times in 1450.
Choosing books to review is the hardest part of the
job. For example, I've got this sharp book about an
evangelist whose sexual assets are God-given. On the
back it has rave notices from papers such as the
Yankton Journal, the Crete Crier and the Middleton
I also have 457 sequels to Jonathan Livingston
Seagull and 36 books about Jackie Onassis. Next
month I'm expecting 1,752 versions of Watergate.
Shirley Smirk, the popular critic of WXYZ radio in
Hoboken, N.J., said they were all great.
As you can see, you have to be a fast reader. A
million words a minute is not bad, but if you have
trouble you can wait for a Reader's Digest condensed
version and review the book from it.
The next step is the actual review. The mark of a
good critic is one can divert as much attention as
possible away from the book to himself.
The key is to compare the book with another
book that is unrelated to the first. For example, you
can compare anything by American authors with
anything by non American authors, such as Yuan
Ying Yang or John Doystoyevsky. No reader will
admit not having read either, let alone admit not
knowing who they are.
There are, of course, old standbys such as
Hemingway, Fitzgerald or Faulkner. You can
compare any literature with their books. Just be sure
to use phrases such as, "this new book reflects the
writings of Faulkner," "reminiscent of Hemingway,"
or even "another Fitzgerald."
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If ail else fails, compare the hook with the Bible.
Better yet review a new translation of the Bible.
Finally, review the author against himself. Say that
"this is Philip Sloth's host to date," or "a definite
letdown from Agatha Ciustie's Murder, Me and
Mystery." This causes real anguish for the reader
because he probably hasn't read those books. To
assure anguish, compare a novelist's first work with
other works that he didn't write and that you made
The point is to drive the redder crazy. If you see
husbands leaving wives, wives shooting husbands or
an increase in membership of the Happyday Book
Club, pat yourself on the back. You are a book
Drug symposium planned
Plans for a seminar Nov. 28 Dec. 1 f
development of alternatives to drug abuse we
announced by the Nebraska Commission on Drugs.
It will be at the Ramada Inn in Lincoln, accordir
to Jeffrey Kushner, commission executive director.
opens at Sheldon
Landscapes by American
artists from the early 19th
century to 1973 occupy the
second floor of Sheldon Art
Gallery through October 28.
"A Sense of Place: The
Artist and the American Land"
is a joint exhibit in cooperation
with Joslyn Art Museum in
Omaha, which is displaying the
MfolTEFo RED CO.
1032 "P" St. tfS-2556
other half of the exhibit
through Oct. 28.
The paintings depict natural
settings from all parts of
America, in styles ranging from
the realistic to the
a bs tract.
. . . Ballet, stalls the Performing
Arts Series tonight at 8 p.m. in
Kimball Recital Hall. Ballet
West USA, a ton-ycar-old
company from Salt Lake City,
will dance to music by
Tchaikovsky, Rossini and
save 50 c on
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Everything for the
433 South 13th Street
Near corner of K St.
Lincoln Nebraska G8D08
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Wednesday, !i.;pu.mi,i;r 20, 1973
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