PositiveThe Boston Globe... chockful of this sort of rueful wit ... funny and sometimes enraging ... O’Connell, a witty and perceptive critic and contributor to The New York Times Magazine, is a good friend to have at the end of the world ... O’Connell is a wry and skeptical stand-in for the reader. There is a comfort in his prose. You get the sense this writer is taking time to order his experience, to bring coherence to his anxieties — and, by extension, to some of mine.
MixedLos Angeles Review of BooksHyde’s arguments are complicated, but one can think of them as stubborn refusals to take the established order for granted ... In A Primer for Forgetting, Hyde wants to trouble our notion of memory as always preferable to forgetfulness ... If we pitched Primer to TED Talk habitués, we could call it \'The Life-Changing Magic of Letting Things Go.\' But Hyde could never give a TED Talk. He refuses to sand the edges or round off the corners of his ideas. And when he extends his thought experiment from the individual to the communal, or national, uses of forgetting, he confronts the limits of his approach ...the question arises: Are we forgetting the right things? Are there things we’re required to remember? ... Forgetting, it would seem, privileges the powerful.