If you’ve learned anything at all from my posts, it is that I’m in love with my husband, TV series, and good fiction, especially from Nick Hornby.
I tried and come up with a non negative critique of How to Be Good, à la Nick Hornby in his Believer articles. I couldn’t. I’m going to try and stay factual here, but please bear with me as I’m not sure how long I can keep it up.
How to be good is about a forty-something couple, married with 2 children, who is at the end of the rope (husband angry all the time, wife having an affair and wanting a divorce) when a certain DJ Feelgood enters their lives and convinces the husband that he can be good and do the good around him. Yes, DJ FeelGood. Just the name says it all, doesn’t it ? So the husband quits his job as a columnist (« The angriest Man in Holloway » is the name of the column, and he stops being angry all of a sudden, it is spooky), the daughter feels warmth and no more pain when DJ FeelGood puts his hands an inch above her, the wife drops the affair in an attempt to salvage her marriage, they convince the entire street to shelter under-privileged kids, some of which rob them, and in the end… I didn’t quite get the end, the snooze was too loud.
Nick, please, don’t let the evil people of editing get you. Keep your characters as crazy as in Fever Pitch, as immature as in About a Boy, as music savvy as in High Fidelity. Don’t try and get all touchy feely, and please for heaven’s sake don’t try to write as a woman. You’re a man’s man. Stick to your guns. Please ?