Less, by Andrew Sean Greer

Views of Less from the group were quite polarised: on balance not finding much of note in the book, and a questioning of why it won a Pulitzer Prize. Similarly to Patrick Gale writing in the Guardian, several members drew similarities in style with Armistead Maupin, but felt that Maupin had the edge over Greer. Some quotes:

  • Quite un-American — written in a British tradition
  • Not engaging
  • Good to see a book covering the identity of middle-aged men
  • Bland, boring, dire…
  • Whimsical
  • Very funny
  • A proud assertion of intergenerational love
  • Poor character development — didn’t know anything about the characters other than Arthur Less
  • Refreshing lightness of touch
  • There was not enough emotional heft to make people care about Less or his relationships
  • Implausible that the narrator would know the level of detail revealed
  • An affectionate portrait of Less
  • Victimhood make Less not particularly likeable
  • Wanted the novel to be so much more
  • Get a feeling of the boy within the man:many of us feel we are not doing a good job of growing up
  • Superficial
  • An Odyssey for the modern age
  • Greer is great at one liners
  • Expectations were high because the book had won a Pulitzer Prize.

GM