Over at Chapter & Verse Blog, Richard Horan writes about his decision to stop reviewing novels.
As a novelist I was being asked to review other novels. Asking a novelist to review other novels is like asking an Italian chef to critique another Italian chef’s spaghetti sauce.
Now, maybe we're sleep-deprived and cranky but this seems to us ... unsound reasoning, at best. The counter argument would be who better understands what does and doesn't make a novel work - and, perhaps more importantly, what a novelist is trying to do - than another novelist? By Horan's logic, all of Updike's criticism would vanish in a puff of smoke, as would the reviews of Coetzee and Banville and many others.
Let's hope the similes in his forthcoming novel are better and more considered.