by Martin Amis
All novelists are Stylists, but only a few are known chiefly for having what Vladimir Nabokov called “a fancy prose style.” Over the past twenty years, no well-known British writer has seemed more a stylist than Martin Amis. Amis is fancy in the hip, urban way of mixing a thrift-store find with a designer piece; his prose is notable for its slanginess as well as its lexical hauteur. Addressing the ghost of his father in his curious new book about Stalin, he writes: “I suppose . . . that there is one chance in a googolplex that [your daughter, also dead] is now at your side.” We hear the echo of the colloquial “one in a m...
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