Near Silence on ‘Wetlands’

When Wetlands, already a German bestseller, became an Amazon global best-seller last year, the NYT did a story on the phenomenon, saying, “It is difficult to overstate the raunchiness of the novel, and hard to describe in a family newspaper.”

This may be the reason that, other than the NYTBR, no print consumer review sources have covered it. 

Some online sources have been less squeamish (as has the British press, which reviewed it widely). New York magazine’s Vulture blog introduced the “Reading Room” this week, an online book discussion group, with five critics taking on a single work, in this case, Wetlands. Unfortunately, the book didn’t lead to much of a discussion; the group universally hated it.

One of the critics, Adam Sternbergh put it this way,  

…if any hardy soul out there is still wondering, “Yeah, okay — but should I read it?”  I’ll offer this capsule review: Imagine a book that includes the sentence “I really like to smell and eat my smegma.” Now imagine if that sentence were 229 pages long.

Libraries that own it show heavy holds on light ordering (42 on 8 copies in one system).

Charlotte Roche
Price: $17.95
Hardcover: 208 pages
Publisher: Grove Press – (2009-04-08)
ISBN-10: 0802118925
ISBN-13: 9780802118929

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