By this afternoon, the UPS guy should have delivered each of you your pre-ordered copies of Glenn Beck's exciting new novel, The Overton Window, a scary-looking "faction" thriller. You've already bought it, but still, how are the reviews?
Well, there's a surprising lack of them, as it happens! Snobby book critics probably aren't so interested in putting in the time, leaving most of work to overtly left- and right-leaning outlets with predetermined opinions.
Book critic Steven Levingston, however, was brave and self-sacrificial enough to read it for a review in today's Washington Post. His review is pretty hilarious, and all he had to do was describe the basic plot and offer some typical quotes.
The novel's evil mastermind is Arthur Gardner, a public relations genius who devised the Pet Rock fad, turned Mao and Che into counterculture fashion statements, created faux ailments such as restless leg syndrome for the drug industry and lifted several presidents to the White House regardless of party affiliation — "ideology was just another interchangeable means to an end." Now he believes the American experiment in self-government has failed, and with the secret consent of the power elite, he is poised to manipulate the public to welcome his ultimate coup — literally, the takeover of the nation, a "new beginning" as he puts it, "one world, ruled by the wise and the fittest and the strong, with no naive illusions of equality or the squandered promises of freedom for all."
Chilling. Who can stop this successful public relations genius, who happens to control American power as a side-gig? A ragtag group of Luddites! They will kill this Gardner prick good.
Beck portrays his do-gooders as peaceful to the point of sappiness — they live in simply furnished cabins with handmade quilts and "things [that] . . . had been built and woven and carved and finished by skilled, loving hands." But this earthiness is grounded in a fervor, an obsession, to save America at any cost. Molly and her crowd assert their Second Amendment right to bear arms and are well stocked with weapons. They even make their own ammunition. Their insistence on nonviolence appears as disingenuous as anything out of the mouth of their nemesis, the insidious manipulator of reality Arthur Gardner. "There's nothing I wouldn't give up to defend my country," Molly says. "No matter how hard it might be, there's nothing that's in my power that I wouldn't do."
Levingston did not care for Glenn Beck's book and said it will encourage right-wing readers to shoot and blow up people.
Meanwhile, Mediaite is doing a "100-part review" of The Overton Window, which we don't really understand and suspect that they don't either. But that's okay! They have some good material, including lengthy coverage of Eliot Spitzer's cameo. (He plays a "horndog." Spoiler!) They were also able to interview Beck. It's a funny read, the way the interviewers restrain from calling his book a freakish piece of horseshit all the time.