Tuesday, February 22, 2011

Spotted: The End of the Affair by Graham Greene

Where: 7-train
Who was reading: A dapper man in his 20's wearing a hat that appeared to be stolen from the set of Newsies. His clean-shaven jaw pulsated wildly in the act of masticating gum, and he adjusted the strap of a leather messenger bag repeatedly like some guy in a messenger bag infomercial demonstrating the ease of strap adjustment.
Notes from the Commentsphere: So the other day some commentor on the blog Read Roger was all like: “I once took a course from...Kingsley Amis.... All he did was harp on and on about Graham Greene's poor grammar and punctuation.”
And punctuation counts. Period. A misplaced comma in Greene’s will led to a protracted legal battle in which it was unclear whether the academic community would have access to his archives. This wouldn’t have been an issue except that the guy Greene put in charge (Norman Sherry) had to go and be a jerk about it. Thus Greene’s death did not mark ‘the end of the affair', it was only the beginning.
But for all that Norman Sherry acted the grinch, he was still less of a jerk than Kingsley Amis’s son Martin. That scoundrel. 
Accordingly: I have made the executive decision to remove The Rachel Papers from my to-read list (it sounded lame anyway), and include The End of the Affair.


  1. I read both articles you posted, and I concur! I did have to smile when I read the retorts to Amis. Children's authors speak so beautifully.

  2. It's almost worth offending them to elicit such eloquent defensive prose.