Chris Ware on DFW’s Novel The Pale King

by Biblioklept

Crippled Robot painting by Chris Ware

Cartoonist/graphic novelist/chronicler of shame and despair Chris Ware wrote about his favorite books for Foyles bookstore. The list includes UlyssesMoby-Dick, and works by cartoonists like Lynda Barry and Ivan Brunetti. Here’s what Ware wrote about David Foster Wallace’s posthumous novel The Pale King:

The first great novel of the 21st century uses the sinister beauty of the American Tax Code as a springboard from which to launch into a genuinely serious discussion of the origins and importance of civic responsibility amidst the hazy, blurred stupidity of a country in quick decline. Contrary to many reviews, I don’t think it’s about boredom, and it’s certainly not boring. Another posthumous editor-to-manuscript resuscitation, the book hangs heavy with the clotted spectre of Wallace’s suicide, which makes the writing glow all the more painfully through it.

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2 Responses to “Chris Ware on DFW’s Novel The Pale King”

  1. Oh man, i struggled and thrived under Pale King..I wrote three posts on it, and devoured the bulk of it in a little over a week. His line about success in bureaucracy is only a measure of your ability to tolerate boredom was amazing…I didn’t find it boring at all. It did feel unfinished to me though, I was left wanting just a *little* bit more…I ended up with a book of his essays, but Infinite Jest (also on my shelf) remains untouched…
    http://katiclops.com/2012/07/10/the-pale-wallace-part-one

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