My review of J.M. Coetzee's Summertime has gone live over at the Barnes and Noble Review. It opens thus:
John Coetzee is dead, and you can feel his relief on almost every page of Summertime. It's hard to imagine a more liberating conceit for an author as private and elusive as J. M. Coetzee, who has artfully constructed a second self through a trilogy of third person "fictionalized memoirs" -- to use his U.K. publisher's inelegant designation -- of which Summertime is the concluding volume. Viking, Coetzee's American publisher, stakes its territory more firmly: "Fiction by the author of Disgrace" declares the book's cover. Clearly, those looking for a faithful rendering of the man in question should consider themselves warned.
You can read the entire review here. And with that, I really am off until next year.