Recent Articles

September 17, 2010

Modern Library Revue: #11 Under the Volcano 9

by

While Dante urged me to strive up, up, up toward heaven’s crooning saints and brightly-lit pinwheels, Malcolm Lowry lit my cigarette and told me it’s always nighttime inside the bar. It was a confusing period in my life.

September 16, 2010

Dinner With Henry Miller 0

by

Name a famous person, living or dead, you’d like to have dinner with. If you answered “Henry Miller,” you can watch Dinner With Henry, a rare, 30-minute documentary about Henry Miller, that is exactly what its title implies: footage of Miller having dinner. (via @maudnewton)

September 16, 2010

A History of Beauty 0

by

“‘Man is hungry for beauty. There is a void.’ Nine words. Take a moment. Say them aloud. What else is there to be said?” –Arthur Krystal’s essay on Umberto Eco’s History of Beauty, at Powell’s Books. (via Arts & Letters Daily)

September 16, 2010

Why A New Madame Bovary? 1

by

Lydia Davis, whose new translation of Madame Bovary comes out September 23, blogs at The Paris Review Daily about why we need yet another translation of Flaubert.

September 16, 2010

Franzen and Oprah: Together at Last? 1

by

If Moby Lives is right, the literary beef that erupted when Oprah selected Jonathan Franzen’s The Corrections for her book club and he rejected the (in his mind, dubious) honor is about to get a curious denouement. Speculation is that Freedom is poised to become another Oprah selection. And your author suspects that Franzen will […]

September 16, 2010

Two Novellas 5

by

I’ve noticed an interesting trend recently toward what seems to me to be the deliberate miscategorization of books. Specifically, an insistence on the part of some publishers that practically everything’s a novel. I understand the reasoning behind it—novels, the argument goes, are somewhat easier to sell than either novellas or short story collections, and all’s fair in love, war, and literary fiction sales strategies—but it still seems unfortunate to me.

September 16, 2010

Dreaming of Hogwarts and Hunger Games 16

by

The plainspoken pulse of The Hunger Games series doesn’t beg you to stop and savor the language. But I’m not reading Mockingjay for those reasons. I’m reading to find out whether the Capitol mutations bred deliberately to hunt Katniss are going to tear her to pieces before she manages to kill President Snow.

September 15, 2010

Google Books: Embargo Breaker 0

by

At The Washington Post, Craig Fehrman points out that FSG inadvertently broke its own embargo on Jimmy Carter’s White House Diary when a preview of the book showed up on Google Books.

September 15, 2010

Elif Batuman: Get a Real Degree 5

by

Elif Batuman’s provocative essay “Get a Real Degree” is up at the London Review of Books: “Despite the recent trend in viewing fiction as a form of empathy training, I’m pretty sure that writing short stories isn’t the most efficient way to combat injustice or oppression.”

September 15, 2010

The Pale King Comes into View 0

by

David Foster Wallace’s unfinished novel The Pale King now has a cover and an April 15 release date (appropriate for its IRS-oriented subject matter.) The New York Times has a bit more.