Thursday, January 15, 2009

Recommendations from elsewhere

An excellent essay on Marilynne Robinson by Garret Keizer, a former Episcopal priest and author of Help: The Original Human Dilemma. (H/t: Elegant Variation.) Will this do for a defense of Home, Frank, or must I still write one of my own?

Brad Bigelow suggests Charles Simmons’s 1978 novel Wrinkles, a “remarkable work of art” about aging.

Richard Marcus has good words for Martin Millar’s 1987 debut novel Milk, Sulphate, and Alby Starvation, just reprinted by Soft Skull Press.

Patrick Kurp is reliving the excitement of reading The Adventures of Augie March, which excitement (I can testify from the recent experience of reading it in the hospital) never goes away.

Mark Athitakis, as I noted below, just finished Ron Rash’s Serena. A “thoughtful portrait of the entire structure of a logging town and how various classes behave within it,” he concludes.

After reading Joseph O’Neill’s overpraised Netherland, Nigel Beale goes back to the far more “original, playful, celebratable” London Fields by Martin Amis.

Afaa M. Weaver recalls John Edgar Wideman’s Brothers and Keepers, and finds it entangled with his own life.

Jessa Crispin is angry at Marghanita Laski (twenty years dead), whose 1949 novel Little Boy Lost reduced her to tears, despite its lack of sentimentality.

Meanwhile, I lent my copy of Goldengrove to a friend—one of the people for whom I started this blog, actually. She returned it and said simply, “Wow.”