KFC uncovers a gem to start 2010.
D.G. Meyers raves about Roth and The Dying Animal in a good way. In his discussion, I realize that there are connections to Camus’ The Fall that I only vaguely recognized when I listened to it last year. Perhaps I should read the thing now, as reading allows much greater focus than listening while driving. A surface similarity is that both first person narrators are talking to a largely anonymous “you”. More deeply, D.G. Myers notes: “In short, The Dying Animal belongs to the same literary class as Lolita, in which a moral monster arraigns himself by means of his own self-defense.” The Fall is perhaps the opposite of that, in which a moral monster redeems himself by means of his own harsh judgment.
Steven Riddle: “I think I say enough when I note that while it hasn’t replaced Yiyun Li’s The Vagrants in my affections, it has certainly risen to thosse heights–heights marked by a desire to reread the book almost immediately to catch what wasn’t caught the first time through.” I will be getting to it within a week, if not days. My appetite is whetted.
I second this: “I will try to stay alive in 2010 if at all possible.”
Upon reflection prompted by Sarah, I realize only about one fifth of the books I have read were by authors who happen to be women. Of course, ethnicity was probably even more skewed in my selections. Should I be more conscious of these things?
Maud Newton seconds Colson Whitehead’s suggstion.
If, like me, you have not started in on Bolano, you might want to start with a free copy of Nazi Literature in the Americas.
Check out The New Yorker Fiction Forum, hosted by Trevor of The Mookse and The Gripes.
Best of 2009 Links: