Another Review at MyShelf.Com

Consider the Lobster
And Other Essays

by David Foster Wallace

      Consider the Lobster, a collection of ten essays, is very informative and enlightening but the reading is not that easy.

The essays are loaded with footnotes that sometimes take away from the main text, but the key is to read each footnote and go back and re-read the text. It takes effort but the effort will be rewarded.

Foster also uses abbreviations and initialisms profusely. For example i/r/t for in regard to; pc for political correctness and many others. Again, the key is to keep up with them until they become part of the reading vocabulary. The regular vocabulary has the ring of William F. Buckley, Jr. A good dictionary will help.

One of the more interesting essays is "Authority and American Usage." Anyone interested in our changing language will enjoy this essay.

The essay dealing with John McCain's run for the Democratic nomination for President gives a fair analysis of the man -warts and halos. It also gives a good look at how political campaigns are run.

The most interesting essay is "Host." In discussing John Ziegler and other radio talk-show hosts, the author uses boxes, arrows and more arrows to tell his story. It looks for all the world like a rough draft, but the reader comes away with a satisfying knowledge of talk radio.

The reading is difficult but the more one reads, the easier it gets and in the end it is worth the effort.

The Book

Little Brown and Company / TimeWarner
More at
NOTE: Has one essay on the pornography industry with some sexual content.

The Reviewer

Willie Elliott
Reviewed 2006
© 2006