Welcome Guest [Log In] [Register]
Welcome to The Fictional Woods. We hope you enjoy your visit.


You're currently viewing our forum as a guest. This means you are limited to certain areas of the board and there are some features you can't use. If you join our community, you'll be able to access member-only sections, and use many member-only features such as customizing your profile, sending personal messages, and voting in polls. Registration is simple, fast, and completely free.


Join our community!


If you're already a member please log in to your account to access all of our features:

Username:   Password:
Add Reply
What have you just FINISHED?; Sure you can start em....
Topic Started: Oct 28 2007, 05:28 PM (255,383 Views)
nnyhav
Member Avatar
itinerant kibitzer
[ *  *  *  *  *  * ]
Javier Marías, Your Face Tomorrow V3: Poison, Shadow and Farewell (Margaret Jull Costa) [NDP]: an uptick from V2 but on the whole baggier and doggedly shaggier than what else of his I've read
Pegasus Descending: a book of the best bad verse (James Camp, X.J. Kennedy, Keith Waldrop eds) [Burning Deck]: unfortunately no Stuffed Owl
Patrick White, The Vivisector [Penguin]: also baggier than, as if enacting the flaws described
Mario Bellatin, The Large Glass (David Shook) [Phoneme]: three autobiographies, stranged and stranger without reference to his corpus
Clive James, Latest Readings [Yale]: chattier but still incisive wind-up
Offline Profile Quote Post Goto Top
 
nnyhav
Member Avatar
itinerant kibitzer
[ *  *  *  *  *  * ]
^I think the incorporation of the animythic gives BiaW more heft ...

meanwhile for me an uptick:
Benjamin Fondane, Cinepoems and Others (var, Leonard Schwartz ed) [nyrbpoets]: strong selection across oeuvre of Romanian/French small-s surrealist [3AM]
Ezra Pound, Cathay: The Centennial Edition (Zhaoming Qian,ed) [New Directions]: historical significance (and controversies) overshadows merits (but does not reduce them)
Ivan Klíma, Love and Garbage (Ewald Osers) [Knopf]: the writer the lover the wife the father Kafka Apocalypse and detritus (a tad overspliced) (cf authread linkage)
Tor Ulven, Replacement (Kerri A. Pierce) [Dalkey]: here the splices work ... authread
Emmanuel Bove, Henri Duchemin and His Shadows (Alyson Waters) [nyrb]: shorts, minor stuff [MAO; intro]
Offline Profile Quote Post Goto Top
 
nnyhav
Member Avatar
itinerant kibitzer
[ *  *  *  *  *  * ]
César Aira, Ema, the Captive (Chris Andrews) [NDP]: authread
Ge Fei, Flock of Brown Birds (Poppy Toland) [Penguin]: wanted to start with something earlier and more typical, this is thin (barely novelette) but good [ARB]
Angélica Freitas, Rilke Shake (Hilary Kaplan) [Phoneme]: 2016 BTBA poetry winner, blending hi/lo working best for titular sequence, only occasionally otherwise [3%; samples]
Chris Wickham, Medieval Europe [Yale]: as advertised
Jean Echenoz, Big Blondes (Mark Polizzotti) [New Press]: dry noir, cleverness only for the narrator (wouldn't have bothered given reception here and [MAO] but for packaged with Piano and Running)
Offline Profile Quote Post Goto Top
 
nnyhav
Member Avatar
itinerant kibitzer
[ *  *  *  *  *  * ]
^ at this time and distance I can't elaborate more fully tho I stand behind what I said then and there; one thing about inspired madness is that it can be hit or miss, and yes with Nerval more the former than the latter ... I will add that it's worth getting https://archipelagobooks.org/book/the-salt-smugglers/ in full (and considering Sebald's Vertigo in light of)
Offline Profile Quote Post Goto Top
 
nnyhav
Member Avatar
itinerant kibitzer
[ *  *  *  *  *  * ]
Christa Wolf, Cassandra (Jan Van Heurck) [FSG]: brilliant in concept and execution, the essays following more interesting than most critiques
Proensa: An Anthology of Troubadour Poetry (Paul Blackburn) [nyrb]: good broad scope, fair rendering [RainTaxi]
Jean Echenoz, Piano (Mark Polizzotti) & Running (Linda Coverdale) [New Press]: better than Big Blondes fersure, but not quite as good as I'd been led to expect [MAO1, MAO 2]
Pierre Senges, Fragments of Lichtenberg (Gregory Flanders) [Dalkey]: a fine conceit ambitiously overcooked [MAO]
Offline Profile Quote Post Goto Top
 
nnyhav
Member Avatar
itinerant kibitzer
[ *  *  *  *  *  * ]
Monica Youn, Blackacre [graywolf]: justly a contender for NBCC NBA PEN awards, strong and well-crafted [Stephen Burt's pick of '16 & interview]
Antonio Moresco, Distant Light (Richard Dixon) [archipelago]: spectral shimmering [LitRev]
Joy Williams, The Visiting Privilege: New and Collected Stories [Vintage]: fulsome emptinesses attending damage, diversifies after the early stories [nyrb, #5]
António Lobo Antunes, The Splendor of Portugal (Rhett McNeil) [Dalkey]: colonial dissipation, overfaulknered [OLM]
Jon Fosse, Trilogy (May-Brit Akerholt) [Dalkey]: cold love story [Nordic Council Lit Prize '15]
Offline Profile Quote Post Goto Top
 
nnyhav
Member Avatar
itinerant kibitzer
[ *  *  *  *  *  * ]
a couple of old pieces of business from Feb first
Benito Pérez Galdós, Tristana (Margaret Jull Costa) [nyrb]: put on to this by Julián Ríos' Loves That Bind; had been led (by MAO) to expect more of a period piece, but the effective mode changes elevates it beyond
Stephen Edgar, The Red Sea: New & Selected Poems [Baskerville]: put on to this by Clive James; selected well judged new less so

and from The Bookshelf of Good Intentions:
James Joyce, Finnegans Wake [Penguin]: what I said along the way
Quote:
 
(after part I): funny how a book of such reputation hinges largely upon reputation; and speaking of gossip and such, such modalities: he do the puhleeze in different joyces; I knew going in it was circular but it's more matryoshka without an outside, everything nested within everything else [snip]
(after part 2): many a novel throw one into the middle right off but few manage to keep one in the muddle the whole way thru
and now that I'm the whole way thru (with the prop of Campbell & Robinson's Skeleton Key, which was the Baedecker at hand, not so much an analysis as a gloss, but all such inadequate anyway to the multischema underlying), my first take is closest to that of Waggish (except that I put in weeks rather than months), and might elaborate further that the collisions are inelastic, everything holds together because it sticks together, whether at the level of portmanteau words or twisting turns of phrase (both of which along with the musicality serves to slow one down) or semiotectonics or modes and registers or architexture ... could say more about the chaotic neurotic indeterminancy and humor but it's still settling .... and I have one substantive disagreement with Suz, even tho she's far more expert: Joyce doesn't create a universe, he recycles the one we got (same with the language).

(oh and a couplother waggish links
http://www.waggish.org/2006/whats-missing-from-finnegans-wake/
http://www.waggish.org/2011/the-linear-and-the-circular-in-ulysses-and-finnegans-wake/
Edited by nnyhav, Mar 20 2017, 04:18 PM.
Offline Profile Quote Post Goto Top
 
nnyhav
Member Avatar
itinerant kibitzer
[ *  *  *  *  *  * ]
Gerard Reve, The Evenings (Sam Garrett) [Pushkin]: effective portrait & landscape, but not as bowled over as MAO ...
Samanta Schweblin, Fever Dream (Megan McDowell) [Riverhead]: wow (expect MBIP shortlisting) [shadow panelist(s), M&L]
Álvaro Enrigue, Sudden Death (Natasha Wimmer) [Riverhead]: widespread acclaim (eg Manguel) justified (expect BTBA shortlisting) but not without flaws (f'rinstance, authorial intrusion too explicit even if/as knowingly so) add: I feel a bit hobbled in that Francisco de Quevedo is mostly unenglished ...
William H. Gass, Eyes: Novellas and Stories [Knopf]: the latest and least of the master's works but when it works stand back [#5]
Edited by nnyhav, Mar 28 2017, 12:18 AM.
Offline Profile Quote Post Goto Top
 
nnyhav
Member Avatar
itinerant kibitzer
[ *  *  *  *  *  * ]
Bae Suah, Recitation (Deborah Smith) [Deep Vellum]: K-Lit thread
Marguerite Yourcenar, The Abyss (Grace Frick) [FSG]: authread
Tyehimba Jess, Olio [Wave]: authread
Jean Echenoz, Ravel (Linda Coverdale) [New Press]: a slight disappointment, slighter than expected; I'd mentioned elsewhere suffering some Marías and Modiano fatigue, now Echenoz too, and I'll sooner go back to the others [MAO]
Offline Profile Quote Post Goto Top
 
nnyhav
Member Avatar
itinerant kibitzer
[ *  *  *  *  *  * ]
roger
Apr 17 2017, 09:16 AM
V was one of two books that I re-read immediately after finishing. The experience was so overwhelming (college days) I am reluctant to read again for fear of tarnishing the memory. The French Lieutenant's Woman was the other.

.
I had a different experience reading V. in college ...
Offline Profile Quote Post Goto Top
 
nnyhav
Member Avatar
itinerant kibitzer
[ *  *  *  *  *  * ]
Ada Palmer, Too Like the Lightning & Seven Surrenders [Tor]: future historical novel, 25th century political intrigue on Enlightenment principles, first half of tetralogy ... soft scifi as the hard stuff is props mainly. Subject of just-completed seminar at CT (spoilers abound)
Thomas Bernhard, Goethe Dies (James Reidel) [Seagull]: Steven has it covered in authread; only disappointed in brevity but then it's concentrated
Can Xue, Frontier (Karen Gernant & Chen Zeping) [Open Letter]: authread
Szilárd Borbély, Berlin-Hamlet (Ottilie Mulzet) [nyrb/poets]: a braid of postwar Berlin a la Benjamin, Hamlet, Kafka, and some Hungarian poets with whom I'm not familiar, more cumulative effect than local brilliance [BTBA poetry finalist]
Martha Cooley, Guesswork: A Reckoning with Loss [Catapult]: touching memoir of linked essays, reflective Italian sabbatical; despite her being a fellow archipeligan I heard via https://lareviewofbooks.org/article/sun-hum-and-shade/ which in turn was in time for me to attend the booklaunch last Wed eve in the Village (add: at which she read the opening chapter) (along with her Adelphi MFA crew and sundry others) (and will backtrack to The Archivist, her bestselling debut)

and as long as I'm adding ...
Franz Kafka, Konundrum: Selected Prose (Peter Wortsman) [archipelago]: new take & a good'un, selected / translated / curated 85pp from letters journals parables etc and 270pp of greatest hits [BrookylnRail]
Edited by nnyhav, Apr 25 2017, 06:56 PM.
Offline Profile Quote Post Goto Top
 
nnyhav
Member Avatar
itinerant kibitzer
[ *  *  *  *  *  * ]
Jacek
Apr 26 2017, 08:28 AM
nnyhav
Apr 23 2017, 10:47 PM
Ada Palmer, Too Like the Lightning & Seven Surrenders [Tor]: future historical novel, 25th century political intrigue on Enlightenment principles, first half of tetralogy ... soft scifi as the hard stuff is props mainly. Subject of just-completed seminar at CT (spoilers abound)[/url]]
That sounds like something I'd like. Do you think I would?
yes but

no spoilers but commentary will affect reception ... as polisci-fi it's hi achievement, with the bonus of future historiography (which Enlightenment? and no I don't mean geographically) (and it goes back further; Palmer teaches early modern at UChi ... certain baroque touches too tho too much a pageturner to get too literary) with gender and religion mixed in (shades of Le Guin there) ... my reservations are that (for me anyway) the technological basis is an extrapolation from a couple generations back (ooo flying car Uber!), sometimes essential, sometimes drawn upon nonorganically as deus ex machina, got in the way of suspension of disbelief.

My preference is for Lem, as antidote starting Summa Technologiae

Oh, and by the way, Tull dammit.
Offline Profile Quote Post Goto Top
 
nnyhav
Member Avatar
itinerant kibitzer
[ *  *  *  *  *  * ]
Anthony Burgess, Re Joyce [Ballantine]: just the FW section to finish it off, I appreciate his appreciation
Stanislaw Lem, Summa Technologiae (Joanna Zylinska) [Minnesota]: 50yr old futurology that still holds up, but it's still futurology, but interesting as background to his late work [waggish at LARB]
Marie NDiaye, Ladivine (Jordan Stump) [Knopf]: identity beneath identity, all in the family, strong and unsettling [links in authread]
Offline Profile Quote Post Goto Top
 
nnyhav
Member Avatar
itinerant kibitzer
[ *  *  *  *  *  * ]
Mathias Énard, Compass (Charlotte Mandel) [New Directions]: authread
Paul Bowles, The Sheltering Sky [Ecco]: competent but something wrong, pastichery (Camus, Lowry, Greene did it better)
Antoine Volodine, Radiant Terminus (Jeffrey Zuckerman) [Open Letter]: between this and Lesson 11 I think I have a feel (and respect) for the project, in its best manifestations, but not tempted to go whole hog [LARB (and previously on Lesson 11)]
Robert Creeley, Collected Poems 1945-1975 [California]: the stuff from the 60s and either side a couple years is Creeley at his best, syntactical master; what preceded (and to a lesser extent succeeded) more often slighter (not a function of brevity) but worthwhile beyond merely tracking development
Offline Profile Quote Post Goto Top
 
nnyhav
Member Avatar
itinerant kibitzer
[ *  *  *  *  *  * ]
John Berryman, The Dream Songs [FSG]: still filling in holes in my understanding of development of US poetry ...
Louise Erdrich, LaRose [Harper]: a bit disappointing, didactics somewhat tainting family story
Elsewhere (Eliot Weinberger, ed) [Open Letter]: small selection of translated travel poetry, loosely connected, Paris/NY/LA etc from outside [extended excerpt]
Martin Seay, The Mirror Thief [Melville House]: change of pace for me, intertwined intrigue (looked like promising followup to Compass), fair debut but not my cuppa
Offline Profile Quote Post Goto Top
 
nnyhav
Member Avatar
itinerant kibitzer
[ *  *  *  *  *  * ]
Jerzy Pilch, A Thousand Peaceful Cities (David Frick) [Open Letter]: my second try with him, more successful than the first, more Hrabal in the mix [MAO]
Antonio Di Benedetto, Nest in the Bones (Martina Broner) [archipelago]: short stories (up to novelette length) spanning his career and range, some better than Zama
Abdellatif Laâbi, In Praise of Defeat (Donald Nicholson-Smith) [archipelago]: poems from across career selected by the author, French and englishing on facing pages, some of the music of language lost but that of idea preserved, runnerup for 2107 poetry BTBA
Antonio Tabucchi, For Isabel: A Mandala (Elizabeth Harris) [ARChipelago]: Tabucchi's range continues to surprise; curiously segued into my next reading:
Sadegh Hedayat, The Blind Owl (D.P. Costello) [Grove]: yep had to after Compass, and I don't get why it otherwise never came to attention [except MAO who gave it a graf in his book]
Offline Profile Quote Post Goto Top
 
nnyhav
Member Avatar
itinerant kibitzer
[ *  *  *  *  *  * ]
Cleanthes
Jul 8 2017, 01:47 PM
nnyhav
Jul 7 2017, 09:44 PM

Antonio Di Benedetto, Nest in the Bones (Martina Broner) [archipelago]: short stories (up to novelette length) spanning his career and range, some better than Zama

Could you please list those stories that are better than Zama?
f'rinstance, "The Affection of Dimwits" or "Aballay" (and among the shorter, "The Horse in the Salt Flats" or "Lazarillo of Hermosilla" but unfair to compare such distillation), but then I was less taken with Zama than most, which is not to say not taken

(oh and by the way redhead, thx for bolstering my inclination not to continue beyond TBP tho I'm sure some find rewarding, for me too much Asimov transposed)
Offline Profile Quote Post Goto Top
 
nnyhav
Member Avatar
itinerant kibitzer
[ *  *  *  *  *  * ]
Finally! all worth the wait, in gold:
Patrick White, The Solid Mandala [Avon]
Yuri Herrera, Kingdom Cons (Lisa Dillman) [& Other Stories]
Olga Tokarczuk, Flights (Jennifer Croft) [Fitzcarraldo]
Offline Profile Quote Post Goto Top
 
nnyhav
Member Avatar
itinerant kibitzer
[ *  *  *  *  *  * ]
Rodrigo Fresán, The Invented Part (Will Vanderhyden) [Open Letter]: So so pomo, too pop despite touchstones shared, more DFW than Pynchon et al, some moments some even longer but some slog [#5]
Odysseus Elytis, The Sovereign Sun (Kivion Friar) [Temple]: yes good but short of Cavafy, Seferis even as wider-ranging
John Kinsella, Jam Tree Gully [WWNorton]: Bush Thoreau, of place and place within, certainly competent but not my cuppa [JK thereon]
Gisčle Prassinos, The Arthritic Grasshopper: Collected Stories, 1934-1944 (Henry Vale and Bonnie Ruberg) [Wakefield]: footnoteworthy, highlights Surrealism's indebtedness to folktales (again not my thang so much), Verne, etc [biblioklept]

reading receptivity low of late so grain of salt
Offline Profile Quote Post Goto Top
 
nnyhav
Member Avatar
itinerant kibitzer
[ *  *  *  *  *  * ]
Cleanthes
Aug 28 2017, 03:22 PM
nnyhav
Aug 28 2017, 12:03 PM
Rodrigo Fresán, The Invented Part (Will Vanderhyden) [Open Letter]: So so pomo, too pop despite touchstones shared, more DFW than Pynchon et al, some moments some even longer but some slog [#5]

Outside of the shared touchstones (which are very good indeed), it's less than so-so pomo, you're being generous. The Dreamed Part is even more sloggish.
Yep, thx4 steering me away from that over in authread, even tho Nabokov is a more powerful touchstone for me ...
Offline Profile Quote Post Goto Top
 
DealsFor.me - The best sales, coupons, and discounts for you
Go to Next Page
« Previous Topic · General discussion · Next Topic »
Add Reply