peteg's blog - noise - books - 2016 04 17 PaulBeatty Tuff

Paul Beatty: Tuff

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Kindle. Somehow this put me in mind of Murray Bail's Holden’s Performance, which I haven't read for an age. I didn't enjoy it anywhere near as much as the other two by Beatty that I've read (The Sellout, The White Boy Shuffle), probably because I am less interested in and sympathetic to the rhythms of NYC street life, hard, harsh and unforgiving as it is. There are moments of Tarantino here; a black rabbi, why not... and the lead is really a ghetto thug whose thuggishness is quietened but not occluded by the extensive accounts of domesticity and mateship. The sumo wrestling is cool, but as for Tarantino, cool violence is nothing like insight. Wearing.