Thursday, 24 February 2011

Harper's Magazine May 1947: Review Under The Volcano

Jacques Barzun reviewed Under The Volcano for Harper's Magazine in May 1947. He dismissed the novel as "desperately dull" and "an anthology held together by earnestness".


  1. I know literary criticism is by nature subjective but I can't fathom for the life of me how anyone could find the book "desperately dull". As for "an anthology held together by earnestness" I'm not even sure what that means. Oh well, can't please everyone I guess.

  2. Hi Tony

    Thanks for dropping by.

    It is strange what reviewers thought back then as Harper's was not the only negative review.

    I don't know whether you have read the post below:

    But it really surprised me that Orson Welles didn't think much of the book either - I always thought he would have done a great job on making a film of the book.

    As you say "you can't please everyone"!!!