The first thing I noticed when comparing The Criterion to The Dial was the amount of advertising in The Dial. The names of some of these novels presented do not even sound real. The Goose Man and Rootabaga Stories have intrigued me more than I care to admit. Even though this magazine mostly has ads related to literature, the ads make the magazine feel less pretentious than The Criterion. In The Criterion, there was no explanation of the pieces chosen or any explanation of the magazine’s overall purpose. The Dial seems like a magazine I would actually enjoy or at least I would mind pretending to enjoy. The Criterion did nothing for me. I must admit that the pleasure I got from The Dial was entirely from the advertisements. What’s not to love when it has a header reading “The Color of Life is in These Books.” Which seems like a bit of a stretch considering all the novels sound absolutely boring. Nonetheless, The Dial was a far more enjoyable read.
Interesting point: Scott Fitzgerald seems to approve of the novel Babel stating that “Babel is the love affair of hundreds of thousands of people, one of the most real and human love episodes in recent fiction.”