One of the most challenging tasks for any writer is evoking the physicality of life using only words on a page. With his new book The Archeology of a Good Ragù: Discovering Naples, My Father and Myself, John Domini does exactly that. Simultaneously a concise history of Domini’s family, a portrait of contemporary Naples, and an exploration of the region’s food and art, the book seamlessly moves from one topic to the next, memorably evoking a holistic sense of the minutiae of life. Domini and I chatted via email about the long process of writing this book and how it connects to his other works.
In our afternoon reading: revisiting a classic punk album, politically- themed writings, Ottessa Moshfegh’s latest collection reviewed, and more.
I’m probably stating the obvious here, but: solitude can yield impressive literary results. Samuel Beckett made stunning fiction from characters trapped in their own heads. Novels like Paul Harding’s Tinkers and Lydia Millet’s My Happy Life take similar approaches, taking the inner life of singular characters to a heightened level. There’s a certain school of nonfiction that places a narrator alone in a landscape and lets them work wonders with the scenery around them. And that, more or less, brings us to […]
Happy birthday to Fred Perry. Lynne Tillman, Adam Levin, Chloe Caldwell, Darin Strauss, and other writers tell Tin House about bad habits. Dick Gordon at Salon on the genius of Studs Terkel. “Solitude is a problem for writers generally, who spend so much time alone rehearsing a form of ideal communication.” – Emily Cooke at The New Inquiry. Steinbeck writing letters in 1962. Rosie Schaap on Donna Summer. Berenstain Bears talking points. Follow Vol. 1 Brooklyn on Twitter, Facebook, Google + and our Tumblr.
“All I could think of upon hearing this was that vibrating moment when the young Jay Gatz, not yet Gatsby, sees his future arrive in the guise of a yacht dropping anchor on Lake Superior.” – The real life of Alan Feuer in the New York Times. John Steinbeck’s dispatches from the Vietnam War. Book Boroughing has their picks for the PEN World Voices Festival. Tolstoy and Dostoevsky do battle for the hearts of readers. Macmillan and Penguin standing their […]
A roundup of things consumed by our contributors. Tobias Carroll We’ve got two weeks of reading here. This….might take a while. Though it’s a strange cosmic joke that I made my way through the 850-page novel on the list to follow faster than nearly everything else on it.
Why John Steinbeck matters now more than ever (not counting the last time around he matter more than ever). Maud Newton backs this up. The New York Times 100 notable books of the last 365 days. Mark Cuban is publishing an eBook. We’re hoping that it’s all haikus about Dirk Nowitzki. Jon Cotner and Claire Hamilton take a trip to Fire Island, and they put together a beautiful slideshow for The Believer. Ronan Farrow, the son of Mia Farrow and Woody Allen, is […]