It’s been pretty dead at my house. I haven’t read anything interesting in a while, except for lots of Rex Stout, who’s pretty fab, but who doesn’t exactly keep me up at night pondering the deep questions.
This story caught my eye the other day, though. I particularly love the blase reaction of Roberta Silman, who went on vacation in time to totally miss Alice Hoffman’s embarrassing public flip-out over nothing (in her review of Hoffman’s latest novel, Silman described the book in question as lacking the spark off Hoffman’s earlier work, which she says she liked), followed by Hoffman’s asinine defense of herself (“Girls are taught to be gracious and keep their mouths shut. We don’t have to,” said Hoffman, trying to write off her blatantly immature act of malice against another female publishing professional as for god’s sake, feminism), and Hoffman’s subsequent deletion of her Twitter account. It would be dull to sit through it all first hand, but how lovely for her to get back from a weekend in the Berkshires and be presented with this brief snack of schadenfreude.
It’s amazing that anyone could even wonder whether disseminating someone’s contact information and instructing your fans to harass that person over a minor professional slight might just perhaps be going too far, almost as amazing as Hoffman’s implication that only in the age of electronic mass media and microblogging have authors finally been given the power to respond to book reviewers. No one who’d ever read the letter column of The Nation could read that with a straight face.