I think I may have to buy this book.I didn't *love* it, but it's an academic book, and dense, and there's a lot I want to review. However long it's been on my "currently reading" list, it didn't actually take me 7 months to read. But the library kept taking it back, and it wasn't something meant to read in one sitting.Smiley is insightful and intelligently articulates what she thinks the novel is, which I must admit I don't fully agree with. Nevertheless, she argues well for her position, and though she seems to want to orient novels in more political landscape than I think is always necessary, she is consistent in discussing the novel in her terms, and it doesn't get confusing. I may not always agree, especailly when she discusses her political position, but it never overwhelms the thesis of the book.However, because she talks politics, when she uses the terms 'liberal' and 'conservative' as literary poles, I don't know what she meant. It unnecessarily confused the issue.At the very least, I added some 90 books of her list of 101 to my TBR list (just what it needed). And I could use this book on my shelf...it's useful enough to come to again and again.