McPhee is a master in a genre virtually unknown in the Netherlands: the documentary on paper. He is a journalist — an understated, measured, and precise journalist — but his articles can easily be as long as 30,000 words. Most of them have been published in the New Yorker.
I admire almost anything McPhee wrote since the 1960’s, except for the detailed books on geology, also because of his experiments with the narration. There really is more than one way to tell a story, and John McPhee always gives perfect examples how.
This Reader offers pieces and chunks of articles he wrote between 1976 and 1996. Highlight for me, time and time again, is the story about a bush pilot named John McPhee, who wrote letters to the New Yorker the other John McPhee was ‘using’ his name.
A delight, this anthology.