Coetzee's Siberian Wastes. "Youth", by J.M. Coetzee. [review]
In "Youth", the South African novelist J.M. Coetzee (who has recently taken to the Adelaide Hills) continues the project he began some years ago with "Boyhood". We are told by the publishers that this is a novel; indeed, the use of the third person throughout makes this plausible. But there is little doubt that it is autobiographical, if not autobiography; if it is a novel, then the claim resides essentially in its being an exploration of mood and feeling, rather than external events — with perhaps an occasional fictional elaboration. Whatever the case, Coetzee is intent on tracking the Siberian wastes of himself.