(Edward Montague) Compton Mackenzie Benny Green - Essay

Benny Green

(Contemporary Literary Criticism)

The fate of Sinister Street is unique in that its virtues as a novel have been overshadowed by its accidental status as a germinating influence on a more solemnly regarded writer. The juxtaposition of Mackenzie with Scott Fitzgerald has always seemed a shade bizarre, for a multiplicity of literary, historical and cultural reasons, but the measuring of Sinister Street against Fitzgerald's This Side of Paradise, defined by Edmund Wilson as 'an American attempt to rewrite Sinister Street,' undertaken at a point in Fitzgerald's life when he was 'drunk with Mackenzie', soon reveals that these unlikely literary bedfellows were stalking the same quarry, the lost innocence and naivete of...

(The entire section is 512 words.)