Some novels have a sense of place. Jenny Hval’s Paradise Rot drips with it. This is the story of a young woman named Jo, who’s come to study in a country other than her own. Where she’s from and where she is are never crucial to the plot — there’s a brief mention of Jo as Norwegian, and of certain locations in the south of England, but specifics, at least these specifics, aren’t the point here. Our protagonist is far from home, speaking a language that isn’t her first, and living among people with whom she’s out of sync. This is a novel about dislocation, about being out of step with a place. It’s also a ghost story — perhaps several varieties of ghost story.
In our afternoon reading: exploring Jenny Hval’s new novel, Paul Auster and Luc Sante in conversation, and much more.
In our afternoon reading: thoughts on Jenny Hval’s new novel, an interview with Tana French, and more.
In our afternoon reading: essays by Jonathan Lethem and Tommy Pico, an excerpt from Jenny Hval’s newly-translated novel, and more.
In our afternoon reading: thoughts on books by Jenny Hval and Ursula K. Le Guin, an interview with Nana Kwame Adjei-Brenyah, and more.
In our morning reading: interviews with Ahmed Saadawi and Jenny Hval, the efforts to declare Walt Whitman’s Brooklyn home a landmark, and more.
In our afternoon reading: revisiting an Elena Ferrante novel, interviews with Jenny Hval and Jason Diamond, and more.
In our afternoon reading: Alexandra Kleeman and Lincoln Michel talk fiction, new nonfiction from Sarah Gerard, an interview with Laurie Penny, and more.