Ever since this post way back on August 6, I've been looking forward to reading Fan Tan, supposedly written by Marlon Brando and Donald Cammel. So the other day I picked up the book at the local library and brought it home. What a great cover! Too bad I started reading it, because I was very disappointed. It got a starred review in PW, but I thought the writing bit the moose. I couldn't get past about the first fifteen pages. I skipped to the Afterword, which pretty much says that Cammel did all the actual writing, though Brando came up with much of the story. Doesn't matter. I couldn't get through it. Maybe some other time.
I also tried Chris Elliott's The Shroud of the Thwacker. I figured a book that sends up Dan Brown, historical mysteries, and amateur sleuths, all in the vein of Mad magazine, would be just what I needed. It wasn't. I got through about forty pages of it and gave up. The stuff that was supposed to be hilarious just didn't work for me. Obviously I'm turning into the typical grumpy old man. That must be it.
UPDATE: Lee Goldberg has an interesting post related to The Shroud of the Thwacker on his blog.