"The Novel America Needs in 2013"

In a 2012 column, Mark Bauerlein suggested that some enterprising novelist should write a satirical novel lampooning (what he saw as) the faults of young-adults-these-days:

Yes, there are several superb recent novels about teens and 20-somethings by talented writers, like Jeffrey Eugenides’ “The Marriage Plot” and Gary Shteyngart’s “Super Sad True Love Story.” But they have too much sympathy for the emerging adult, too much understanding of young love and companionship, to do the work of correction.

It will take an altogether different book to explode extended adolescence; specifically, a frolicking comic novel that submits the interests and longings of pre-adults to whimsy, burlesque and farce. Not gentle humor, but all-out comedy or satire that casts the whole experience and habitat of pre-adults as both ludicrous and avoidable.

It’s been over eight years. Has anyone written this novel?

I imagine that that novel has probably been written thousands of times over the centuries, and has never been in any sense successful.

I imagine a living wage would go a lot farther toward ending “extended adolescence” than some out-of-touch old man writing a book about how much he hates them.