I’ve read all three of Zadie Smith’s books and I’m sorry to say that, for me, she pushed it too far this time.
Issues are, of course, what leads people to write, have ideas and put their opinions on the map, but variety is the spice of life.
Zadie Smith, like Spike Lee, is popular in middle-class arty white society and, I suspect, likes the fact. But both of them are obsessed with being black, to the point that they lose perspective.
On Beauty is, on the surface, a polemic on the shallowness of beauty (or indeed the beauty of beauty), but really it’s about being black. Big bootys as opposed to big beauties. Smith adds a fresh dimension to her writing by introducing a mixed race marriage at its core and an adulterous husband (one white, one black victim).
But it’s the same old same old.
Truth be told, her WRITING is brilliant as ever, but her plotting is feeble and the denouement farcical.
I struggled though all 450 pages of this novel and admired bits of it, I think her dialogue is as good as anybody writing today that I’ve read (It’ll make a good screenplay) but I think Zadie Smith needs a sabbatical to find new writing material/subjects.
Or is it just that I ain’t black?