May 09, 2005



I've got to disagree with you a bit on the LATimes running reviews for each volume of 'Complete Peanuts'. When the LIbrary of America's Complete Philip Roth starts (this year?), should the LATimes review only the initial volume? What about the writer's evolution, missteps, etc.?


I've got to disagree with you a bit on the LATimes running reviews for each volume of 'Complete Peanuts'. When the LIbrary of America's Complete Philip Roth starts (this year?), should the LATimes review only the initial volume? What about the writer's evolution, missteps, etc.?

Dan Wickett

I agree with Scott on this one. There will be one volume every six months for 13 years. If in each of those cases, the reviewer devotes 3/4 of a page to the two years covered, and a 1/4 page to one of the countless strips that were heavily influenced by Schultz, it still might not be enough ink.


Kit Stolz

The editor of the LATimes Book Review is leaving and the LATimes itself is under a lot of fiscal stress. Are these two events related? And what will the future hold for this section of the paper? And could it be that the review of the review is softening a little thinking about these questions?

That's what I wonder. Every publication has its ups and downs, and I've always wished the review would simply cover more books, but still, all in all, I think our Sundays would be considerably poorer without this section of the paper, or with the half-hearted attempt subscribers had to live with for years and years before Wasserman.

daniel olivas

i noticed that, yet again, the graphics/photos, though nicely done, take up a huge amount of space. even where the total number of pages drops to twelve as it did yesterday, you could easily add another four reviews by shrinking the graphics/photos (doing away with them altogether would almost double the space for reviews, but that's kind of radical).

robin d. gill

While living on the other side of the continent, i am aware of the existence of the LA Times because about 10 years ago a reporter once wrote a decent=long article on men in dresses and skirts (non-bifurcated clothing)-- it was reprinted in the Japan Times -- and because a year and a half ago, my first book in English was almost reviewed by it. Because the reviewer had a blurb on my book's back cover or because i mentioned her book after her name after the blurb, the editor poohpoohed the review as a conflict of interest. Imagine that! All because i put some words from a letter (i had not asked for a blurb much less paid for it!)on my back-cover, the people of los angeles (who, judging from your list of recommended nonfiction, could use the stimulation my books offer) still do not know i exist (and i am still too poor to send review copies out to prime the pump). But note: my books are up for you to view at Google Print and Amazon's Look Within. And, that brings me to the idea that surfaced as i wrote the above:

Why not try reviews based on reading what can be read (20% a month or whatever) at Amazon and Google? Do you recall Wilde's words about not reading a book before reviewing it lest he be prejudiced as to the content? This would not be quite that interesting, but would it not be more fair -- and kind to readers -- than the situation today, when the selection of books for review reflects the $$$$$$$$$$$ put into the pr?

"Rise, Ye Sea Slugs!"

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