Review: Jonathan Coe’s The Terrible Privacy of Maxwell Sim

12Mar11

From The San Francisco Chronicle — Review by Martha McPhee

The Terrible Privacy of Maxwell Sim

By Jonathan Coe

(Alfred A. Knopf; 314 pages; $26.95)

At the beginning of Jonathan Coe’s beguiling new novel, “The Terrible Privacy of Maxwell Sim,” Max, in Australia visiting his estranged father, observes a Chinese woman and her young daughter at a restaurant. They are enjoying a game of cards, “bonded to each other, with a strength and an intensity” while the other diners distract themselves with cell phones and Nintendo DS devices – the protective wall of modern technology that keeps the other out.

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One Response to “Review: Jonathan Coe’s The Terrible Privacy of Maxwell Sim”

  1. 1 Pat Newman

    Nice to see this review — so well done. Would you actually recommend this book, i.e. if you weren’t reviewing it, would you want to read for your own pleasure? Or did you choose to review it because you already liked it? Just curious. Whatever, nice to see your work in my local paper.


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