Self-Described Media Obscurity Gets Still More Ink

Despite my fervent hopes we might have heard the last of Paulo Coelho, but no such luck: NYT reporter Alan Riding is the latest witness to Coelho’s constant moaning: “I am not in the United States what I am in France or Spain or Germany…I have never broken the barrier of the press. In the United States, I am a great success, but I am not a celebrity.” Riding’s headline suggests that Coelho’s “writing in a global language,” to which one might well respond: yeah, that of the lowest common denominator.

As was the case with Eleven Minutes last year, I did actually open a copy of The Zahir and try to read it, but this is pretty godawful stuff, folks. I mean, I’d sooner finish John Twelve Hawks’ The Traveler than read even one more chapter of Coelho…and I’d seriously consider picking up Lauren Slater’s short story collection again, too.

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31 August 2005 | interviews |