It’s creepy to read Nathaniel West cold, not knowing anything about him except a friend said to read Miss Lonelyhearts. His writing seems prescient and modern. His novella about a conflicted advice column writer is spare and intense like the eyes of a fevered person. West’s character is afflicted with the classic ennui of existentialism, but his writing elevates the trope. I can only imagine writers envy him.
The tone was perfectly atmospheric and moody. Miss Lonelyhearts was a raincloud and its New York City was too. West conveyed an almost satirical notion of depression and futility, his writing serious but the plot hard to take seriously.