Tag Archives: literary oddities

Rotten Reviews: The Violent Bear It Away

“As a specialist in Southern horror stories, Miss O’Conner’s attitude has been wry, her preferences perverse, her audience special.”

Kirkus Reviews

Excerpted from: Bernard, Andre, and Bill Henderson, eds. Pushcart’s Complete Rotten Reviews and Rejections. Wainscott, NY: Pushcart Press, 1998.

Rotten Reviews: Wise Blood

“A gloomy tale. The author tries to lighten it with humor, but unfortunately her idea of humor is almost exclusively variations on the pratfall…Neither satire not humor is achieved.”

Saturday Review of Literature

Excerpted from: Bernard, Andre, and Bill Henderson, eds. Pushcart’s Complete Rotten Reviews and Rejections. Wainscott, NY: Pushcart Press, 1998.

Rotten Reviews: McTeague

“…grossness for the sake of grossness…the world will not be proud of it in that distant tomorrow which irrevocably sets the true value on books of today.”

The Literary World

Excerpted from: Bernard, Andre, and Bill Henderson, eds. Pushcart’s Complete Rotten Reviews and Rejections. Wainscott, NY: Pushcart Press, 1998.

Rotten Reviews: The Birthday Party

“What all this means only Mr. Pinter knows, for as his characters speak in non-sequiturs, half-gibberish and lunatic ravings, they are unable to explain their actions, thoughts, of feelings. If the author can forget Beckett, Ionesco, and Simpson he may do much better next time.”

Manchester Guardian 1958

Excerpted from: Bernard, Andre, and Bill Henderson, eds. Pushcart’s Complete Rotten Reviews and Rejections. Wainscott, NY: Pushcart Press, 1998.

Rotten Reviews: Common Sense

“Shallow, violent, and scurrilous.”

William Edward Hartpole Lecky, A History of England in the 18th Century 1882

Excerpted from: Bernard, Andre, and Bill Henderson, eds. Pushcart’s Complete Rotten Reviews and Rejections. Wainscott, NY: Pushcart Press, 1998.

Rotten Reviews: Lolita

“That a book like this could be written–published here–sold, presumably over the counters, leaves one questioning the ethical and moral standards…there is a place for the exploration of abnormalities that does not lie in the public domain. Any librarian surely will question this for anything but the closed shelves. Any bookseller should be very sure that he knows in advance that he is selling very literate pornography.”

Kirkus Reviews

Excerpted from: Bernard, Andre, and Bill Henderson, eds. Pushcart’s Complete Rotten Reviews and Rejections. Wainscott, NY: Pushcart Press, 1998.

Rotten Rejections: Affairs of the Heart

“…the author’s writing deteriorates in a peculiarly striking fashion as he lays about him with him with his satirical club… a very mystifying and unsatisfactory product for the American market.”

Excerpted from: Bernard, Andre, and Bill Henderson, eds. Pushcart’s Complete Rotten Reviews and Rejections. Wainscott, NY: Pushcart Press, 1998.