The Cloud Bookcase

A strange essay.

The Cloud Bookcase
Eliot Weinberger

Absorption of Solar and Lunar Essences
by Anonymous (4th century)

Alchemy of the Purple Coil
by Anonymous (12th century)

A treatise on sexuality. The female sexual organ is referred to as the ‘furnace of the reclining moon’. A later commentator notes that ‘it has never been known that one can obtain immortality by mounting women.’

Arcane Essay on the Supreme Cultivation of True Nature
by Anonymous (14th century)

Recommends the avoidance of sleep.

Arcane Notes on the Cultivation of True Nature
by Fu Tu-jen (11th century)

Dietary instructions. In the seventh and eighth months, worms should be eaten.

Biographies of Presumed Immortals
by Anonymous (10th century)

Recent Posts

Criticism Isn't Free

CR is dedicated to thoughtful, in-depth criticism without regard to what's commercially appealing. It takes tens of hours each month to provide this. Please help make this sort of writing sustainable, either with a subscription or a one-time donation. Thank you!

You could also purchase one of my acclaimed ebooks.

Got Something To Say:

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *



The Surrender is Veronica Scott Esposito’s “collection of facts” concerning how she embraced her true gender.


Two long essays of 10,000 words each on sex in—and out of—literature . . .

The first essay dives in to Nicholson Baker’s “sex trilogy,” explaining just what Baker is up to here and why these books ultimately fail to be as sexy as Baker might wish.

From there the book moves on to the second essay, which explains just why Spaniard Javier Marías does right what Baker does wrong . . .


5 essays. 2 interviews.

All in all, over 25,000 words of Latin American literary goodness.

3 never-before-published essays, including “The Digression”—a 4,000-word piece on the most important digression in César Aira’s career.

Shop though these links = Support this site

Copyright © 2018. Powered by WordPress & Romangie Theme.