The British Have No Taste

I always thought that the British had no taste.

Now I have proof.

A survey of readers has voted JK Rowling the “Greatest Living British Writer”.

JK Rowling has been voted the greatest living British writer in a survey published by The Book magazine.

The Harry Potter creator, whose stories of the young wizard have sold over 300 million copies worldwide, received nearly three times as many votes as Discworld author Terry Pratchett in second place.

They have confused popular with greatness. Because something is popular doesn’t make it great, or even worthy. In a moment of weakness several years ago I actually read the first of the Harry Potter series. I shouldn’t have bothered. Oh, I suppose it is a mildly entertaining read, but great it definitely is not. It would not be listed in my best 100 books written for children.

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2 Responses to “The British Have No Taste”

  1. Richard says:

    I don’t know that I would go so far as to say they have no taste, but I agree this seems to rate popularity. I’ve read all the Harry Potter books. I enjoyed them, but they follow the boarding school formula from the turn of the twentieth century as shown by the Ruth Fielding books of a hundred years ago. Great books, no. Fun, yes.

    I love Terry Pratchett. It’s hard to find a good comedic science fiction or fantasy writer. British life must do something in that area because another author I like in that genre is Douglas Adams, especially his Dirk Gently books.

  2. Trevor says:

    Good comments Richard. I also agree with you about Douglas Adams and your comments have made me realise I need to revisit his books – and there are a several I haven’t read yet and are sitting on the bookshelves unread, untouched and generally unloved – for now. What an oversight! I need to take time out to deliberately read more.

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