Of Milan Kundera's critical essays, Wood writes, "Occasionally we want his hands to be a bit inkier with text."
If that means producing a book like this, no, we don't.
I tried using How Fiction Works in class this quarter. I came away from the experience convinced that this is a book without an audience. Writers will want to stick with Kundera; young readers will drown in Wood's ink.
Of course the book has merit. Wood is indisputably a brilliant critic. Of Dostoyevsky, for instance, he says: "In the novel, we can see the self better than any literary form has yet allowed; but it is not going too far to say that the self is being driven mad by being so invisibly scrutinized."
But these thrills are too rare. For a novice, Wood is too inky, and for the practitioner, he lacks bravado.