It bothers me (the book, not the comment) because in the past I’ve been quite keen on his novels. Girlfriend In A Coma and Hey, Nostradamus are notable favourites.
Let me republish the comment I left on Michaela’s post above:
As for jPod. It really isn’t very good, is it? When it’s actually advertised as ‘Microserfs for the…’ you know it’ll suck. I enjoyed Microserfs, but not this. Too much knowing, pomo-ironic self-reference. I hate to say this, but he seems more concerned with being Douglas Coupland and living up to his pop-culture prophet rep than writing good books anymore. Hey Nostradamus is the only worthwhile one from recent years. I’ll second the rec on Girlfriend, though. My first Coupland, and still a favourite.
I find myself wondering, if it’s just a little too subtle for me, if the lack of subtlety is the point in itself. Is that what Coupland is trying to say?
And then I think, nah. This one’s just a miss. ‘Microserfs for the Google generation,’ but without the appeal. Being knowing and clever is a major part of what I like about Coupland, but when it’s detached from an interesting or enjoyable novel then it just isn’t enough.
(By the way, please don’t forget this - voting until the 11th.)