Hey, Boston Globe: ‘Dispatches’ Is NOT a Novel

Michael Herr, widely regarded as the premier chronicler of the Vietnam War, died on Thursday at the age of 76.

Today’s Boston Globe includes this Associated Press obituary. Lede:

 

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Noooo . . . not a novel, but “the seminal work of new journalism about the Vietnam War,” as Emmett Rensin wrote in Vox. It took Herr ten years to produce Dispatches, after suffering a nervous breakdown upon his return from Vietnam and not writing anything for five years.

Rensin also noted this quote by Hunter S. Thompson: “We have all spent 10 years trying to explain what happened to our heads and our lives in the decade we finally survived . . . but Michael Herr’s Dispatches puts all the rest of us in the shade.”

The end of the AP obit notes that “[Herr’s] other books included ‘Walter Winchell,’ a 1990 novel about the powerful and irascible gossip columnist.” Actually, that is a novel, so the AP went one-for-two on the book front.

No correction attached to the Globe pickup, though. So they’re oh-for-one.

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3 Responses to Hey, Boston Globe: ‘Dispatches’ Is NOT a Novel

  1. none says:

    Shouldn’t your headline say “Hey, Associated Press?”

  2. […] the hardreading staff has noted, yesterday’s Boston Globe ran this Associated Press obituary of the great Vietnam War […]

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