K.T. Kahn reviewed Inland by Gerald Murnane in our fall 2012 issue.
1. Ice by Anna Kavan Kavan creates a world that is the stuff of nightmares, blending reality, dreams, and fantasy in an uncanny, unsettling way. Kavan certainly deserves a much wider audience.
2. Zazen by Vanessa Veselka A truly prescient novel that taps into many political, social, and personal anxieties prevalent in America today. Veselka’s prose is raw, unflinching, poetic: Zazen is a truly remarkable debut novel. Veselka has said that Zazen arose from her inability to process the 2004 school hostage crisis . . . continue reading, and add your comments
Scott Bryan Wilson is a contributing editor to The Quarterly Conversation.
*Death of a Hero (1929) – Richard Aldington – Penguin Classics is issuing a new edition of this next year; think Stoner-level bleak/intense about war
*The Keys to Tulsa (1991) – Brian Fair Berkey – the author completed this one novel before dying of a brain tumor; it’s incredibly funny and sharply written
*Crime and Punishment (1866) – Fyodor Dostoyevsky – you see, this guy commits a senseless murder OKAY I KNOW I KNOW I should have read this years ago
*Fathers and Sons . . . continue reading, and add your comments
Jeff Bursey’s most recent review for The Quarterly Conversation was of My Struggle by Karl Ove Knausgaard in the Winter 2013 issue.
#1: My Struggle, by Karl Ove Knausgaard. This hit me where I write and in what I think of family relations. To the first: the play of ideas mixed with the recitation of events is powerful. Too few writers think that ideas can be exciting, and they belabour plot and character instead. To the second: the re-appraisal of family relations means more to me now than it might have five years go, for example, . . . continue reading, and add your comments
If you are a serious reader of Laszlo Krasznahorkai, you must get a copy of Music and Literature Issue 2, publishing this spring. There is simply no other way to put it. Issue 2 will cover Krasznahorkai, Max Neumann (whom Krasznahorkai collaborated with for AnimalInside), and Bela Tarr (whom he collaborated with for films).
Among the writers featured in M&L 2 will be David Auerbach, Sergio Chejfec, George Szirtes, Dan Gunn, Sandor Radnoti, Jonathan Rosenbaum, Justin Beplate, and Paul Kerschen. It will also include a lengthy essay by myself on Krasznahorkai, as well as my interview with Seiobo’s . . . continue reading, and add your comments
Here are the 5 picks from TQC Poetry Editor Erica Mena.
1. The Keep by Emily Wilson This book demands to be consumed slowly, word by word. Each poem a dense wordscape that must be read and reread, immersed in and languished over. Its rich and lush and slow. Luxurious.
2. Voyager by Srikanth Reddy An immense work. Haunting, lyric, and perhaps the most successful erasure I’ve ever read. The three erasures construct three different takes on the horrors and strangeness of the twentieth century. The third, the bulk of the book, moves the fastest for me . . . continue reading, and add your comments
Congrats to self-published author Sergio De La Pava for having his A Naked Singularity appear among the Wall Street Journal’s best books of 2012.
Here is our Naked Singularity reading group from this past summer.
And Scott Bryan Wilson’s Quarterly Conversation review of the book, which played a key role in making this happen.
Brad Johnson reviewed The Planets by Sergio Chejfec in the Winter 2013 issue.
Reiner Stach, KAFKA: THE DECISIVE YEARS The first volume of Stach’s three-volume biography is already one of the finest I’ve read in years. Here is a portrait of an artist at work, in love, and in strife. Highly recommended not only readers of modernity’s master, but for those who want to see what one can do through the art of biography.
Sergio Chejfec, MY TWO WORLDS The inner world spilling into the outer, and the outer crowding its way into the world, . . . continue reading, and add your comments
We’ve polled a number of editors and contributors to The Quarterly Conversation for the favorite reads of the year, and we will be rolling them out over the rest of the year, starting today. So, enjoy.
Just printed out a copy of The End of Oulipo? to give to the great translator of Georges Perec and author of Is That a Fish in Your Ear?, David Bellos.
It’s publishing in 1 month, so if you want it, head to Amazon or B&N.com.
Contains my essay “The Literary Ouroboros,” plus lots of other stuff that looks excellent (and no doubt will be proven excellent once my copy arrives. So buy it.
You can read Rose McLaren’s essay on the films of Bela Tarr, plus select other items, for free online.