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August 04, 2005

Times Gets More Mileage Out of "9/11 Fiction"

by Ron Hogan

NYT critic Caryn James considers "the intertwining legacy of terror attacks and fiction" and determines that "some of the most ambitious novelists in London and New York are not addressing the 9/11 attacks themselves but their intangible legacy." If that sounds familiar, well, that's because it's not much different than what Edward Wyatt was reporting in the Times way back in March, when "the literary world [began] to grapple with the meanings and consequences of the worst terrorist attack ever to happen on American soil." Just swap Chris Cleave for Jonathan Safran Foer, Michael Cunningham for Reynolds Price, and Patrick McGrath for Lynne Sharon Schwartz--you can even keep Ian McEwan right where he was. Any predictions on which authors will be included when Janet Maslin or Laura Miller revisits this theme again at the end of the year? (OK, that was a bit mean, I admit.)

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