The title of North Carolina native Jason Mott‘s “Hell of a Book” — recent winner of the National Book Award for fiction — reminded me of a story (possibly apocryphal, though perhaps not probably) about the acclaimed writer and UNC professor Max Steele.
A former student sent a copy of his new novel to Max for a blurb. Read it, hated it, wrestled with how to comment without dishonoring himself. His solution: “Damndest book I ever read!”
I hope the author was pleased — after all, that’s how Faulkner (in a letter to his Aunt Bama)– described his own “The Sound and the Fury.”