Welcome to this week’s weblog. Here’s our roundup of your comments and pics from the ultimate week.
“Winter getting you down?” asks playitagainstu. “Need an immediate dose of cheering-up? Then I can heartily suggest Arnold Bennett’s shortish comedian novel The Card.” Let’s hear extra:
Through a sequence of roguish adventures, fortunate breaks, and cunning schemes, the excellent Denry Machin rises from the dust of the Five Towns to the giddy heights of fame and fortune, or even when he lands within the mire he always comes up smelling of roses. At the quiet of the story, a collection of neighborhood councilors discuss how Denry has controlled to reach such a zenith. “What tremendous purpose is he diagnosed with?” asks one, at a loss for words. “He’s recognized,” replies another, “with the fantastic motive of cheering us all up.” And I assure that this delightful, hilarious gem WILL cheer you up. If it doesn’t, I’ll individually call around and make you a delicious Omelette Arnold Bennett in reimbursement.
Sounds like a remarkable provide. But not everyone has been so sure approximately their studying this week – Vesca has struggled with Things via Georges Perec (translated via David Bellos):
I don’t surely have an opinion to provide. Nothing occurs. And come what may, notwithstanding handiest being about one hundred twenty pages long, it occurs at a period. The most important characters have no man or woman at all. They have stuffed that area with hankering over – properly, ‘Things’. They are barely alive, and by the time you finish all one hundred twenty pages you’ll be so catatonic you’ll surprise in case you are both … I just notion of an opinion: Clever rather than enjoyable.
Ouch! Luckily, Lawrence Durrell’s “very slim volume” Esprit de Corps has additionally proved an awesome discover for nina1414:
I usually idea that Lawrence Durrell might be very extreme, however, those brief stories are very much in the vein of P.G. Wodehouse. Some high-quality snapshots are painted. And every tale comes with a one-webpage instance by way of V.H. Drummond.
Elsewhere, A Closed and Common Orbit by way of Becky Chambers has pleased pub bore:
Character is actually Chambers’ robust factor: all of the everyday trappings of area opera are there and very well achieved – the alien planets and races, the technology – but at the centre of it all is the story of two people – the AI in an unlawful frame and the ex-slave who takes her in – which you come to absolutely care approximately. I loved it.
And Oudtshoorn has had the good fortune of reading a first Elizabeth Strout novel, Olive Kitteridge:
Enjoyed it, specifically her depiction of Maine towns at ocean’s part excessive at the rocks. She does this effortlessly, as part of the story. No lengthy, boring descriptions of surroundings. Her understanding and knowledge of human nature go away me breathless. How does she do it? I am seventy-five and nonetheless don’t come near knowledge people. Lovely creator.
Finally, an unarguable recommendation from Tom Mooney:
Just tucking-in to more than one John Cheever testimonies. Very finished writing. The Swimmer, in particular, is a masterpiece. Anyone who can initiate nearly the emotion of a novel in just 16 pages is a hell of a creator.
The Burt Lancaster movie of that tale is – whisper it – probably even better. It doesn’t take place often, but I simply assume this time the movie has even greater nuance than the paper version. Perhaps we have to think about it as the exception that proves the guideline?
Interesting hyperlinks approximately books and studying
William Boyd and Alan Taylor rejoice the existence and work of Muriel Spark.
Alas, the New York Times didn’t pass for the headline Paperback Rider for this tale approximately sex in Nineteen Seventies novels.
Atlas Obscura needs to recognize approximately the first-class things people have determined in old books.
The identical website online has a charming story about the borrowing habits of writers using the New York Society Library.
Colm Tóibin on Joseph Conrad.
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