Sunday, 13 November 2011

The Finkler Question by Howard Jacobson

This I found to be a slightly mannered novel, in that all the dialogue is crafted to carry meaning rather than sound authentic. Nothing wrong with that but it weighs heavily on the comedy.

The book is essentially about being, and not being, Jewish. It is also about the rather rarified world of the London intelligentsia and, as far as one can tell, the world to a large extent inhabited by the author. It has some funny and bathetic moments but the artfulness of the dialogue makes it hard to empathise with the characters. The emotion feels created rather than felt.

But it moves along nicely and is an enjoyable read.