Solitude gives birth to the original in us, to beauty unfamiliar and perilous - to poetry. But also, it gives birth to the opposite: to the perverse, the illicit, the absurd, and that first love ...
Anka Semankova - How I fell in love with L E Sissman | Tony Peyser | Opinion | The Guardian
Pamela Paul’s memories of reading are less about words and more about the experience. “I almost always remember where I was and I remember the book itself. I remember the physical object,” says Paul, the editor of The New York Times Book Review, who reads, it is fair to say, a lot of books. “I remember the edition; I remember the cover; I usually remember where I bought it, or who gave it to me. What I don’t remember—and it’s terrible—is everything else.
Bohumil Hrabal (Vita Nuova, etc.) is among the most revered modern Czech authors, and there have been quite a few fictional tribute-works to the master, such as Esterházy Péter's The Book of Hrabal and Paweł Huelle's Mercedes-Benz-- and now there's also an opera ! by Miloš Orson Štědroň:Don Hrabal, playing at the Prague National Theatre; see theirinformation page or, for example, the Prague TV report
Like Jozef Imrich, Bora Ćosić isn't entirely known in English -- and My Family's Role in the World Revolution is definitely worth your while; see the Northwestern University Press publicity page (yes, it appeared in their wonderful Writings from an Unbound Europe-series), or get your copy at Amazon.com or Amazon.co.uk
↩︎ The New York Times
The very existence of this book is a stout marker of the robust good health of the publishing industry, and even, in its own way, small evidence that 2016 hasn’t been all bad. It also shows that, four years after its takeover and relaunch, Pushkin Press has retained an essential part of its character even while expanding into crime, children’s books and contemporary English language titles. In other words, where else might we see a beautifully-produced, mass-distributed book containing two essays written 70 years apart about a city I’d never heard of before now?
In the first of a new weekly series, the novelist recalls her first love (My Brilliant Friend by Elena Ferrante.)
by Elena Ferrante
And for Ferrante readers, the column may seem, indeed, imbued with the very essence of the writer: “We always look at first times with excessive indulgence. Even if by their nature they’re founded on inexperience, and so as a rule are not very successful, we recall them with sympathy, with regret. They’re swallowed up by all the times that have followed, by their transformation into habit, and yet we attribute to them the power of the unrepeatable.”
The acquiring editor didn’t know her colleague down the hall was writing a book, and he used a pen name for it. “Had Mr. Mallory not prudently scheduled a weeklong trip to Palm Springs, which began the day his agent sent the manuscript to publishers, Ms. Brehl imagines she may have walked the book into his office to ask for his thoughts on it.”
Your Book Editor Just Snagged Your Spot on the Best-Seller List
“One time, a boy kissed me and I almost died. I realize that can easily be dismissed as a melodramatic teenager-ism, said in a high-pitched voice bookended by squeals. But I’m not a teenager. And I mean it in the most literal sense.”
We can easily get addicted to harsh reviews. "The appeal of negativity to the reader, that mysterious quality which makes the pan and the broadside irresistible, should alone warn the cautious critic of indulging in bouts of vitriol too freely, or too frequently. Harsh criticism has an intoxicating effect on writer and reader alike: both ought to be wary of its influence. Like any drug, censure has its benefits, its attractions and its resounding pleasures. But it is also dangerous
Chatelaine recently put together their list of the dreamiest bookstores across Canada - from a shop founded by Alice Munro, to a shop in an Edwardian red brick house, these shops are breathtaking!
If publishers were any good at predicting the future, the book business would be a simpler place. Read more
The Invisible Library had me at “interdimensional secret agent librarian” but it turns out to also be a charmingly-written novel with a wry awareness of literary tropes and their permutations. Published last year in the UK, this is a book The Guardian noted as some of its favorite science fiction, saying “it’s a breath of fresh air to discover a fantastical world that defies easy provenance and brings something new to the genre.”
I agree wholeheartedly, and was gratified to see that two sequels are already written, and due out in the US in September and December, respectively.
"Classical music conducts its business behind a screen of secrets, lies and euphemisms. A maestro is never absent without leave, only ‘indisposed’. No maestro ever gets fired. He becomes Emeritus. Truth gets buried beneath a dungheap of flummery. The real reason for the recent departure of at least one classical performer in this country will not be publicly explained, even though it is well known backstage. The code of silence in classical music is as tight as Sicilian omertà. Speak out, and you’re dead meat."