Books Magazine

Henry Green: The Best Author You’ve Never Heard Of

By Robert Bruce @robertbruce76

First off, thanks to everyone for the kind words last week while I was out with my wife, my 3-year-old and our new little boy. He weighed in at 8 pounds, 15 ounces, and is doing great. At the moment, my life is but one dirty diaper–but I love it!

Second, get over the dangling preposition in the title of this post. I know it’s bothering you, editors.

Now, to the point.

Henry Green: Ever heard of him?

As I mentioned in my preview of Loving, I have no idea who that guy is.

Maybe that makes me an idiot. I don’t know. Are you familiar with him? Be honest.

Anyway, a lot of famous authors have heard of him, and they have great things to say:

Elizabeth Bowen once said of Green: His novels “reproduce as few English novels do, the actual sensations of living”.

W.H. Auden once called Green the greatest English novelist alive.

John Updike had this to say about Green: “So good a writer, such a revealer of what English prose fiction can do.” Updike also called Henry Green a “saint of the mundane.” Do we have another Anthony Powell on our hands?

When you’re beginning to read a novel and a novelist you’re unfamiliar with, it’s at least good to know so much high praise has been heaped upon him.

That said, a lot of high praise was heaped on A Dance To The Music Of Time, and you know how that turned out for me.

I’m in the early pages of this novel, but it feels like a light read to this point. I need that. Plus, Loving is short, only 200 pages. With The Sot-Weed Factor on deck, I need a short read.

More to come on Loving as I get further into the novel.

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