December 27, 2011
These tales are harder than the grotesques of Gogol. Borges, too, you suspect, is up to something relatively straightforward compared to Krzhizhanovsky.
November 30, 2011
John Horne Burns’ The Gallery was his first book, a chronicle of the chaos and beauty and horror of occupied Naples in 1943 and 1944. It’s an interesting hybrid: a novel in which stories alternate with an elegant travelogue, and the travelogue appears to be the author’s memoir: “I remember that at Casablanca it dawned on me that maybe I’d come overseas to die.”
November 29, 2011
by Ranbir Sidhu
One could argue that Gray has been writing his last book for years (and for some years, he’s said as much, though always managing to push out something new and even more “last,” like the never-ending last tours of The Who).
November 25, 2011
No matter how liberal we consider ourselves about the slippery line between memoir and autobiographical fiction – even if we are more Exley than Oprah on the matter – there is still something that seems suspicious about the enterprise of full-on fictional memoir. Is this allowable? Can one simply jump in and narrate the course of another person’s life. Perhaps – if you do it right.
November 22, 2011
Art Spiegelman’s Maus is that rare work of literature that speaks to everyone while pandering to no one. MetaMaus is a record of how Spiegelman pulled off this magic trick.
November 21, 2011
by Bill Morris
Book lovers love to watch two heavyweights slug it out. Bloodshed, though not necessary, is always welcome.
November 18, 2011
by Matt Hanson
David Crockett was romanticized in the same way that classic film stars, athletes, and politicians are, and for a similar reason — the legend is inextricably entwined with the actual human being. Not only is there no urgency to demystify, there’s almost no reason to. Sometimes the legend and the person are inextricable for perfectly good reasons.
November 17, 2011
There’s a lesson in this that might be too awful for us to want to learn, which is that death takes from us not just our lives, but also our right to insist upon a particular version of those lives.
November 14, 2011
by David Rice
Lost Memory is a novel of the ruin and possible renewal of the Garden of Eden, where “maybe the Internet is the Snake and pornography is the forbidden fruit.”
November 7, 2011
by David Rice
Nightwoods is not only grippingly cinematic, it’s also unabashedly movie-ready, no less so than Cold Mountain was.