Okay, so I'm not even going to attempt to write as much or as well as Dave, but I'll give my two cents.
by Paul Quarrington
I read this book with two things in mind: first, its title clearly alludes to Shakespeare, and second, the cover of my edition boasts of the book's win of the Stephen Leacock Award for Humour. I was thus looking for a Shakespearean comedy to follow. I was mistaken, I believe, for a number of reasons, the least of which being that King Lear was not a comedy.
The allusion to King Lear can be found in the delusion and obliviousness of the lead character. By the end of the book the ghosts of his past are as real as the living characters, but I am not even sure why they are haunting him. I think Quarrington tried to convey that Leary's biggest faults in life were a) letting Manny drink himself to death and b) blaming Clarence for the end of his hockey career. Neither of these revelations are funny moments, nor is the fact that he never loved his wife and married her for some unknown reason - possibly because she showed him her "bubbies".
I did not find this book funny, but sad. Quarrington's novel actually exemplifies the isolation of the aging population and that old people are most often portrayed as something to laugh at.
My six word review: Read Barney's Version by Mordecai Richler
1 day ago