No Country for This Old Man: The New Novel by Martin Amis Is About Anything But the ‘State of England’
A mediocre book by Martin Amis is better than most books by anyone else, but unfortunately, a bad book by Martin Amis is just as bad as any other bad book. And Lionel Asbo (Knopf, 255 pp. $25.95) is a bad book.
The mention on the cover of Mr. Amis’s previous masterworks—Money and London Fields—does Lionel Asbo no favors by calling to mind its better-realized predecessors. As in those books, the protagonist is a morally bankrupt, misogynistic menace to society—which for Mr. Amis is a promising start. Unfortunately, Asbo reads like a first draft of an Amis novel, before the linguistic pyrotechnics, trenchant wit and cosmopolitan insight have made it in. Read More