Anna Funder’s novel All That I Am is discussed by Ben Etherington in the Sydney Review of Books. Why does the novel deserve so much uncritical praise he asks.
The good thing about Sydney Review of Books is the long essay. This gives the critic a chance to really develop arguments in a close reading of a book. I find the analysis of the novel’s highly contemporary use of multiple points of view, dual narrators, 1st and 3rd person narrations and sequencing confirms, for me at least, why I found the book hard to read. One of the issues is the apparent sameness of the two main narrative voices. For Etherington they can be indistinguishable.
But I checked this apparent flaw with my wife Neela, who had no trouble following who was saying what. Maybe I am just a poor reader of novels. I also feel confused about Etherington connecting this novel with the airport novel. As a commodity, I read the novel as anything but an easy-read.
A Facebook friend of mind finds the article reactionary. Read Etherington’s article here.