All pasts are unruly. All pasts resist the tidy, codifying insistence of the page, resist the will of the writer.
What, for an author, could be better than unboxing day?
I said I always wished I could see uniform trade paperbacks of my work, books that could sit on a shelf and actually look to be related, visibly related, instead straggling like unruly foster children from different homes.
To The Lighthouse is an unequaled, exquisite cocktail of temporality and mortality.
She must have been one of the most cosmopolitan women of her era. Maybe any era.
Authors who write about film are the very people for whom the term nerdgasm was invented.
These pages pulsate with the life of the great city Boswell loved, with youth, and confidence and bouts of doubt and longing.
Nearly a century apart Sherwood Anderson and Elizabeth Strout created unique modes of storytelling where one character’s deepest heartache or greatest failure is but a footnote in the life of another.
Gene Fowler is a raconteur of the Old School, rooted in the rough-and-tumble world of reporters, men who bellied up to the bar, wrapped their ink-stained fingers around the bottle, and told each other mostly true stories.
The Club, above all, expands on the famous Samuel Johnson quip: “He who is tired of London, is tired of life!” The thump and bustle of 18th century London throbs in these pages.
This heartbreaking saga was the life of the woman who made brilliant the bittersweet “Chelsea Morning” when “The sun poured in like butterscotch and stuck to all my senses….” Is there no justice?
Each time I return to FSF’s novels, his stories, his letters and essays I am saddened, even touched by the talents he squandered. If only….. hangs over the last dozen years of his short life. In some ways I marvel at what he did accomplish, given the self-destruction everywhere apparent.
Her characters are the very sorts of women for whom the words louche, ennui and outré were created.
Perhaps this moment, now, when all our lives are sequestered, made small, compact, cloistered, perhaps this is the moment to return to Barbara Pym: savor your small pleasures.
When I first read Jane Eyre, perhaps at age twelve or thirteen, I was intolerable for months. Southern California was very short on wild moors, and I longed for them.
I opened the back door and walked into a house that was cold, dark, empty, and worst of all, silent. I had just returned from taking my youngest son to university 1300 miles away where he joined his brother. The day your child leaves home is every bit as momentous as...
The phone kept pinging in the night, text after text, for the most part, as I glanced at them, numbers without names. I tried to sleep through them. I tried to sleep at all. I didn’t want to wake up to a world where Donald Trump would be the President of the United States.
Every family has a few cherished stories about how they came to be who they are, anecdotes of some ancestor, someone clever or determined, someone lucky, or fated or foolhardy. Certainly every Armenian family has a story about how they survived the 1915 genocide.
Robin stole from the rich, despised the greedy plutocrats, and in acts of social justice, gave to the poor, the hungry. As a child in Southern California, I knew nothing of class struggle, but I was all on the side of Robin and his Merry Men.
Writers are always advised: write from what you know. I have more often written from what I don’t know, what vexes or haunts or troubles me.