I'm on the side of Mason's friend. I found Netherland precious and boring. Here's a sample passage, selected somewhat at random, in which the narrator Hans reflects in his detached and verbose way on his separation from his wife:
I was determined to open myself to new directions, a project I connected with escaping from the small country of fog in which, at a point I could not surely trace, I'd settled. That country, I speculated, might have some meaningful relation to my country of physical residence, and so every second weekend, when I traveled to London to be with my wife and son, I hoped that flying high into the atmosphere, over boundless massifs of vapor or small clouds dispersed like the droppings of Pegasus on an unseen platform of air, might also lift me above my personal haze. That is, I would conduct a retrospective of our affable intercontinental dealings and assemble the hope and theory that the foundation of my family might after all be secure and our old unity still within reach. But each time Rachel materialized at her parents' door she wore a preemptive expression of weariness, and I understood that the haze had traveled all the way to this house in west London.
Ugh. So overworked and humorless. And too many adjectives.