Monday, February 8, 2016

Literary Barbs

Authors have a way with words; and sometimes they are outspoken about other authors or literature in general.

The British have long had a taste for bad books; but they like them well-written.
                    --Malcolm Bradbury

[On Henry James] One of the nicest old ladies I have ever met.
                    --William Faulkner

Most new books are forgotten within a year, especially by those who borrow them.
                    --Evan Esar

Robert Benchley has a style that is weak and frequently lies down to rest.
                     --Max Eastman

A good book tells us the truth about its hero, but a bad book tells the truth about its author.
                     --G. K. Chesterton              

[On Ben Jonson] Reading him is like wading through glue.
                     --Alfred Lord Tennyson

A sequel is an admission that you've been reduced to repeating yourself.
                     -- Don Marquis

[On Norman Mailer] He is now what he wanted to be: the patron saint of bad journalism.
                     -- Gore Vidal

[On Charlotte Bronte] I wish her characters would talk less like the heroes and heroines of police reports.
                      -- George Eliot

[Joseph] Conrad spent the whole day finding the mot juste, then killed it.
                      -- Ford Madox Ford

A classic is something that everyone wants to have read and nobody wants to read.
                     -- Mark Twain

[On P. G. Wodehouse] English literature's performing flea.
                     -- Sean O'Casey

The big advantage of a book is that it's easy to rewind. Close it and you're right back at the beginning.
                     -- Jerry Steinfeld

[Evelyn] Waugh is an antique in search of a period, a snob in search of a class.
                     -- Malcolm Muggeridge

A literary movement consists of five or six people who live in the same town and hate each other cordially.
                     -- George Moore

To cay that Agatha [Christie]'s characters are like cardboard cut-outs is an insult to cardboard.
                     -- Ruth Rendell

I always wanted to write a book that ended with the word 'mayonnaise.'
                     -- Richard Brautigan

My  father [Kingsley] always had doubts about the Booker Prize although they evaporated on the announcement that he had won it.
                     -- Martin Amis

[On E. M. Forster] He is limp and damp and mild as the breath of a cow.
                     -- Virginia Woolf.

[On Aldous Huxley] The stupid person's idea of a clever person.
                     -- Elizabeth Bowen


Dixie@dcrelief said...

Good thing I'm into Asian movies lately!

Linda Kay said...

Yikes! Blistering commentary!

TexWisGirl said...


Elvis Wearing a Bra on His Head said...

They can be bitchy!

Cloudia said...

oh thank you Angel!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

allenwoodhaven said...

Good picks. There are so many barbs to choose from!

Mike said...

I probably have read zero classics.

John Hill said...

Sometimes the pen is the sword!
Happy Mardi Gras, Angel!