Joseph O'Neill's Netherland, one of the best-reviewed novels of 2008 and the one novel last year that every literary reader felt like they should check out, may have missed out on the Pulitzer Prize and fallen short in the Tournament of Books, but it's gotten what may be a bigger prize. We've made it a pastime at Omni to follow Barack Obama's reading selections (see here, here, here, here, and here), but we figured now that he's in office his reading stack has been cluttered with white papers and classified documents. But maybe now that he's hit the 100-day mark in office he's getting comfortable enough to slip in some recreational reading: in an interview with David Leonhardt for this Sunday's New York Times Magazine (online today), he mentions that he's started Netherland in the evenings.
Will this offhand mention be enough to goose sales for O'Neill, as similar ones did for Fareed Zakaria and Fred Kaplan? We'll see. But as booksellers wait for Oprah to make her next pick (it's been nearly a year since Edgar Sawtelle...), we'll take any recommendations we can get from influential Chicagoan readers. --Tom