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Cormac McCarthy: The Road

In anticipation of the 2009 Pulitzer Prize, I thought it might be nice to look a few past winners (by the way, don’t miss out on the opportunity to win a $75 gift certificate for books from KevinfromCanada by picking this year’s Pulitzer).  I first read The Road (2006; Pulitzer) shortly after…

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Philip Roth: The Human Stain

After finishing I Married a Communist—which I didn’t like—I didn’t know how long it’d be before I gained the courage to read the next book in Roth’s America trilogy, The Human Stain (2000; PEN/Faulkner).  But I did know that for many The Human Stain is Roth’s best book.  And unlike I Married…

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Technical Forum

Yesterday KevinfromCanada pointed out that my blog runs slowly and that when you post comments they sometimes don’t appear for a long time.  I’m hoping to remedy the problems and make this site if not perfect at least less frustrating to access.  So, if you have experienced any difficulties on…

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Henry James: The Turn of the Screw

Henry James pops up everywhere I look.  So many of my favorite (and many of my not-so-favorite) writers reach back to him, not only in their writing style but explicitly in their prose.  Also, last year in my post on Patrick McGrath’s Asylum many people recommended I read Henry James if…

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George Orwell: Nineteen Eighty-Four

I finally did it!  After seeing that I could order one of the new Penguin Modern Classics editions from The Book Depository (free international shipping) for even cheaper (despite exchange rate) than I could on Amazon (free two-day shipping for Prime Members; highly recommended), I finally possess what I’ve been pining for.  I have…

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Edith Wharton: The Age of Innocence

It’s sad that we regard many classic novels as stuffy things of the past.  There are several I’m still afraid of reading (Portrait of a Lady comes to mind) for fear of getting lost in a month-long haze of reading.  I’m sure some of the fault lies in the way these novels are presented in…

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J.L. Carr: A Month in the Country

I was struck recently by the beauty of two covers for J.L. Carr’s A Month in the Country (1980; Booker Shortlist).  I would like to find a bookstore that places together all NYRB Classics and Penguin Modern Classics for browsing.  I’d be a poorer man.  Also, with this particular book,…

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Kevin Vennemann: Close to Jedenew

Kevin Vennemann is a new name for me and indeed for most of the world—he was born only in 1977.  Thanks to Melville House’s Contemporary Art of the Novella series, which focuses on publishing the neglected art form, we in the English-speaking world get this strange little book by a…