Checkpoint

Nicholson Baker’s new novella, Checkpoint, which is coming out with Knopf in August, is about two people who try to devise ways of offing the Shrub. The Independent reports

They don’t actually do the deed, or even attempt it, but the book is – according to early snippets – replete with deep-seated anger and elegantly nasty epithets hurled at both the President and his cabinet.
Mr Baker’s publisher, Alfred Knopf, plans to release the book on 24 August, on the eve of the Republican National Convention in New York. To call it a provocation would be an understatement. The author and publishers have no intention of giving anybody ideas – to do so would be a criminal offence – but they are certainly playing very close to the edge in a United States that, in the wake of the 11 September attacks, has shown no compunction about locking people up and asking questions later.

I’m really curious how the Shrub’s camp will react. All I can say is, Baker should be thankful for his Anglo genes. Man, can you imagine an Arab-American writer coming out with this book? The Bushies would issue a fatwa post-haste.

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