One of the fall books that I’m really looking forward to is Benjamin Moser’s biography of Clarice Lispector entitled Why This World, which, according to the back jacket, is “based on previously unknown manuscripts, numerous interviews, and years of research on three continents.”
I received a copy of this one last week and it looks pretty good.
I partially wanted to mention this bio just to have an excuse to announce that we'll be running an essay on Lispector in the fall issue of The Quarterly Conversation. The lack of attention Lispector has received in the U.S. mass media over the years is stunning. For a writer of her status, the amount of critical, non-academic writing available is really minuscule. So, we're happy to be able to discuss some of her work in-depth.
And if you haven't had the pleasure, I urge you to give her a shot. Lispector's writing is very hard to duplicate, and I haven't seen anyone who can do quite what she did. It's somewhat in the vein of the Sebaldian, autobiographical novel, although the voice is nothing like Sebald at all and Lispector plays very heavily on the fliudity of identity (whereas in Sebald identity tends to be static, since so much occurs in memory).