A blogger on the Guardian books blog thinks that 'a thousand pages is just too many for a modern novel, and has been for years and years'. She explains why. Being a slow reader, I have a certain amount of sympathy with what Jean Hannah Edelstein says, but I don't agree with her. Perhaps without realizing it, she herself supplies the beginnings of a counter-argument:
Stay calm, please: am I saying that we should go out and burn every copy of Middlemarch? No. But I am saying that we are living in an era where novels of epic length are unlikely to be of interest to most readers.
But if we should keep Middlemarch - and War and Peace, Bleak House, The Brothers Karamazov etc - then that must be because there's still a place for long books provided they're good long books. And if that is so, then why not new long books alongside old long books? Follow Dovegrey's lead and settle down in your blankety fastness.