Letters To The Editor

Reviewer misunderstood ‘All the King’s Men’

While I take no issue with the characterization of the new film adaptation of “All the King’s Men” as a general failure, I do find the description of the novel itself inaccurate.

As one who has twice read the novel and considers it to be one of the finer works of 20th-century American fiction, I find the claim that choosing to focus on Jack Burden rather than Willie Stark is comparable to shifting the focus of “American Pie” from Jim to Stifler to be cheapening.

As with Fitzgerald’s “The Great Gatsby,” one of the underlying questions of the novel is that of the protagonist’s identity. In the case of the latter, is it Gatsby or the narrator, Nick Carraway? In the case of the former, is it Stark or the narrator, Jack Burden?