In our morning reading: new writing from Kerry Howley, checking in with Issa Rae, interviews with Elijah Wald and Nick Tosches, and more.
Morning Bites: Grace Jones’s Memoir, Genius Grants, James Baldwin’s Essays, Parquet Courts Mixtape, and More
Genius grants for Donald Antrim and Karen Russell, looking back at James Baldwin’s essays, Parquet Courts has a mixtape, Jeff Jackson has a playlist, and more.
Indexing: Nu Stadium Rock, Steve Erickson, Peaking Lights Made a Mix, “Empire Records” & Record Store Day, Barbara Comyns, And More
A roundup of things consumed by our contributors.
The book: The Vet’s Daughter (NYRB Classics) by Barbara Comyns Pairing: A full English breakfast, hopefully not at the expense of someone else.
Jen Vafidis If by anything, this week has been overwhelmed by the Slate Lexicon Valley podcast (Car Talk for word nerds!) and Julia Holter’s latest album, Ekstasis. I blame the weather in New York, which was way more conducive to headphones and walks than coffee and armchairs.
Posted by Tobias Carroll This is the second of two lists of the books I read this year that I most enjoyed. Here, the focus is on older books that I first encountered this year; strangely, the focus here is much more on fiction than on my other list, and I’m a little uneasy that this list is far more dude-heavy than its counterpart. I wasn’t entirely sure where to fit Michael Kimball’s Us, an older novel revised for its […]
Review by Tobias Carroll Barbara Comyns Who Was Changed and Who Was Dead Dorothy, a publishing project; 193 p. Late last year, The Rumpus reprinted Brian Evenson’s introduction to Dorothy, a publishing project’s new edition of Barbara Comyns’s 1954 novel Who Was Changed and Who Was Dead. Evenson’s endorsement, his enumerations of Comyns’s preferred themes and use of language, and some of the imagery cited all combined to pique this reader’s interest in her work. (A rule of thumb: any […]
Tobias Carroll When I was in the midst of my holiday shopping, I picked up a copy of Muriel Spark’s Not to Disturb at Brooklyn’s Greenlight Bookstore. I read (and was floored by) Spark’s Memento Mori earlier in the year; Not to Disturb is a bit less resonant but deeply enjoyable. It’s very Gothic — locked rooms, sinister plots, and multiple references to “him in the attic” — but there’s a Richard Lester-esque briskness at work as well.