Jonathan Miles

On the Boarders

Canada

By

Bloomsbury 420pp £18.99 order from our bookshop

Several decades ago, the legendary editor Robert Gottlieb playfully assembled a list of imaginary titles with which to launch a doomed publishing house. Topping this anti-bestseller list was Canada: Our Good Neighbor to the North. Richard Ford may or may not have heard this anecdote – Mordecai Richler was fond of deploying it as an indictment of the provincialism of Manhattan publishing – but, either way, one doubts he would have balked at the implied challenge. Ford is, after all, the man who spun a 1,311-page trilogy (The Sportswriter, Independence Day, The Lay of the Land) from several scattered days in the life of a sportswriter-turned-real estate agent in suburban New Jersey. Ford isn’t drawn to histrionics or exotica; he prefers digging into the mundane, the minute, the tiny pivots of ordinary life – into the ‘normal applauseless life of us all’, as he wrote in The Sportswriter

Follow Literary Review on Twitter

  • Last Tweets

    • Whom did Picasso label a 'bristly pig'? Read Rosalind P Blakesley's review of The Collector by Natalya Semenova to… ,
    • Alexandra Gajda on Anna Beer's new biography, Patriot or Traitor: The Life and Death of Sir Walter Ralegh ,
    • Mark Lawson reviews @jonathancoe's Middle England - The Rotters' Club for our Brexit age. ,
    • 'Behind every book that is published lies ... a haunted landscape, populated by the ghosts of things written and ex… ,
    • 'We once more live in a great age of dragon invention' Here's Tom Shippey on Martin Arnold's The Dragon ,
    • RT : Man at the q&a part of the book panel: Don't say it Don't say it Don't say it Don't say it Don't say it Don't s… ,
    • Here's @epkaufm's Whiteshift, reviewed in this month's magazine by ,