One of my favorite Canadian authors is Guillaume Morissette. I just identified him as Canadian, because I really don’t read that many Canadians, but that shouldn’t matter. But it kind of does, because Montreal and Quebec and Concordia University play a role in the new novel from Guillaume–called New Tab (Vehicule Press, 2014). I first came across Guillaume via the Internets a few years ago, and really liked the easy fluidity of his story collection, I Am My Own Betrayal. […]
Occassional Literary Magazine Reviews: n+1 #15
Title: n+1 Number 15, Winter 2013 $13.95 Theme: Amnesty
A Partial Recap: The Southern Festival of Books
The Southern Festival of Books was this past weekend in Nashville, TN. I went to it; at least I went on Saturday, parked in a parking garage, ate a granola bar, and thought about last year when I made a fool of myself in front of Chad Harbach. But that was then. And this is now. Or at least it was “now” a few days ago.
Holly Golightly is a Callgirl
In response to a new West End, London production of Breakfast at Tiffany’s, which portrays iconic Holly Golightly as a prostitute, straight up and unambiguously, Book Bench has posted part of a 1968 Playboy interview with Truman Capote on the subject. Capote: Holly Golightly was not precisely a callgirl. She had no job, but accompanied expense-account men to the best restaurants and night clubs, with the understanding that her escort was obligated to give her some sort of gift, perhaps […]
Can a Book Change Your Life for the Worse?
by Willa A. Cmiel The New Statesman has a new list: 50 Books That Will Change Your Life. It’s an attention-grabbing title, that’s for sure. I’m pretty tired of literary lists, but I it’s a catchy name, and I wanted to see if I had read enough for my life to be satisfyingly changed, for the moment, so I glanced at the first title. It was not what I expected. I read The Black Jacobins by C.L.R. James when I […]
Bites: Dangerous babysitters, jailhouse rock, literary lovin’, Hemingway the Musical
An intellectual’s look at the American tradition of babysitting and why young babysitters are often perceived as dangerous figures. “The babysitter has conveniently served as a lightning rod for adults’ uncertainties about what the limits of girls’ autonomy and empowerment should be.” Whoa. There is babydaddy drama for Jude Law. Fittingly, he once sexed up the babysitter. Charles Manson and Phil Spector are now in the same prison. (via The Rumpus) And blatant literary lovin’ at The Rumpus. (This kind […]
Bites: Beer with ‘Bama, blue M&Ms, Gawker is Gold(man Sachs), Muumuu House is noted, fake local Starbucks protests, etc.
DRINKS AT OBAMA’S THIS THURSDAY. Press Secretary Robert Gibbs is in charge of the beer run, taking orders. (Is anything else important today? Not really, but in case of boredom read on.) There are two kinds of people in the world: those who separate M&Ms based on color and those who don’t. Always firmly in the latter group, I was forced briefly to question my firm stance upon learning that the food dye used in blue M&M’s can mend spinal […]
On Being an Insufferable Snob
Sonia Chung for The Millions recently elaborated on her “insufferable snobbery” when it comes to such literary topics as genre fiction, of which she herself finds them insufferable. She laments the cultural taboo of literary snobbery, citing last week’s profile of Nora Roberts in the New Yorker and a New York Times “Summer Thriller” series featuring Dean Koontz. Why do The New Yorker and The New York Times want me to rethink my dividing lines? Are my soul or my […]