The Failure of Satire – The Cockroach by Ian McEwan

My lack of understanding of British politics might be a factor but I was unimpressed by this supposed masterpiece of satire. The concept-a reverse Kafka if you will-is intriguing, hence my picking it up at the library, and in many ways well done. But I think the problem is that if you don’t believe that Brexit is an on its face stupid, disastrous policy then the satire comes off not as comic genius but as another example of the mindset that leads to populist revolts.

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The Names of the Dead by Kevin Wignall

The question that lingers, and one that is very relevant for today, is whether people trained to excel in war and counter-terrorism are “monsters” or just have the necessary detachment and compartmentalization.  But also rolled up in that are questions about relationships, family, motherhood, faith, friendship, etc. If you enjoy your thriller with a literary sensibility, Wignall is a great choice and The Names of the Dead is classic Wignall.

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