Inside Story by Martin Amis: An arrogant and long-winded mess

Martin Amis trips over his own cleverness in irksome and largely autobiographical work

Martin Amis: The only places Inside Story makes any impact are where it is straightforward and sentimental.

Martin Amis: The only places Inside Story makes any impact are where it is straightforward and sentimental.

Martin Amis would like his latest novel to be read “in fitful bursts with plenty of skipping and postponing and doubling back – and of course frequent breaks and breathers”. The 500-page tome is about “a life, my own” that “won’t read like a novel [but] more like a collection of linked short stories, with essayistic detours”. His heart goes out to “those poor dabs, the professionals (editors and reviewers), who’ll have to read the whole thing straight through, and against the clock”. Does it, indeed.

It seems to me the only way to read this book is “straight through, and against the clock”. Inside Story is an arrogant and long-winded mess with a bad dose of the male gaze that even its supposed self-awareness can’t fix.

The Irish Times
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