Open a book this minute and start reading. Don’t move until you’ve reached page fifty. Until you’ve buried your thoughts in print. Cover yourself with words. Wash yourself away. Dissolve. Carol Shields Republic of Love

Sarah Hall’s The Wolf Border (2015)

It’s an old term, ‘wolf border’, from the Finnish language: susiraja.

The boundary betweent the capital region and the rest of the country: everything which lies beyond the border is wilderness.

HarperCollins, 2015

Certainly Rachel does have to explain a lot about her scientific work with wolves beyond the border.

And it’s not only Londoners […]

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“Fiction” Alice Munro

Is it something like a triangle? With happiness, unhappiness and love arranged with an equal distance between each point?

Perhaps. Certainly there are triangles in “Fiction”, shifting alliances and fractures.

Love triangles. Happiness triangles.

Just enough. Too much.

The kind of happiness discussed in “Fiction” is different from that which Doree/Fleur muses upon in “Dimensions”.

[…]

Mark Anthony Jarman’s Knife Party at the Hotel Europa (2015)

A book-length demonstration of propulsive prose.

This is the word that I wrote in capital letters, in the margins of my reading diary about Mark Anthony Jarman’s Knife Party at the Hotel Europa (2015), but then I wondered if I had subconsciously (deliberately, even!) lifted it from the cover.

It sounds like a word one might see […]

June 2015, In My Stacks

My progress through Gabrielle Roy‘s works has been slow but steady, and this month I requested one of the children’s books, which I held out for myself as a reward for finishing six of her novels.

My treat was to be Cliptail, but the only copy available in the public library was the French edition, […]

Neil Smith’s Boo (2015)

There are “ways of making people into ghosts”. So Atticus say, to Jem in To Kill a Mockingbird, about Boo (Arthur) Radley.

Alfred A. Knopf, 2015

Neil Smith turned Oliver Dalrymple into a ghost in Boo. And, then, he named him Boo and gave him a Casper the Friendly Ghost wrist watch.

Whether or not Arthur […]

“Dimensions” Alice Munro

Things that you can slip between.

They are often ‘new’ in nature.

Perspectives transform.

If I was playing $30,000 Pyramid, I might think such things, in response to the idea of ‘dimensions’.

At the heart of Alice Munro’s “Dimensions”: a woman who is fundamentally altered, facing a ‘new’ future, slipping between layers of meaning,  transforming.

[…]

TGIF: In the workplace, on the page (4 of 4)

A new Friday fugue, concluding this week, considering the ways in which our working lives appear on the pages of novels and short stories. (Previous weeks can be viewed here, here and here, if you’re keen.)

Riverhead, 2013

Mohsin Hamid’s How to Get Filthy Rich in Rising Asia (2013) “Her […]

Sally Mann’s Hold Still (2015)

Sally Mann’s Hold Still is a photographer’s memoir; although she has kept a journal since she was a girl, her love of imagery is deeply rooted, and it’s hard to imagine her memoir taking any other form.

Currently represented by the Gagosian Gallery, her CV is impressive and extensive, but even those who have never […]

Joseph Luzzi’s In a Dark Wood (2015)

Phyllis Rose took a year to read Proust and wrote her “memoir in real time”. More recently, Rebecca Mead revisited Middlemarch and she, too, wrote a memoir which examined her own life in that context. In Tolstoy and the Purple Chair, Nina Sankovitch plunged into the classic Russian’s work as part of coping with her sister’s […]

TGIF: In the workplace, on the page (3 of 4)

A new Friday fugue, running through this month, considering the ways in which our working lives appear on the pages of novels and short stories. The first two weeks appear here and here.)

Tightrope Books, 2011

Kathryn Mockler’s Onion Man (2011) “The first night, time went by fast because it […]