Sheila Heti Second Novel

How Should a Person Be?, il secondo romanzo di Sheila Heti è uscito in Canada presso House of Anansi, ma non riesce a trovare un editore in America. Strano, perché il primo romanzo della giovane e talentuosa scrittrice candadese, Ticknor, era stato pubblicato dalla prestigiosa Farrar, Straus & Giroux. O forse non è così strano, visto l'incipit, "We live in an age of some really great blow-job artists".
How Should a Person Be? is a novel about a woman in her late twenties living in Toronto, trying to figure out how make art (she's working on a play commissioned by a feminist theater) and, more important, how to be an artist. ... Unable to make the play come together, the protagonist, also named Sheila, displaces her aesthetic ambitions into giving perfect haircuts and performing perfect oral sex. observer.

A proposito di blow-job (non è un argomento propriamente natalizio, ma comunque piccante, come il panpepato), Books Ngram Viewer, è uno dei molteplici, interessanti tools di Google: traccia il grafico della popolarità di una parola o frase nel tempo. L'espressione citata sopra non dà risultati, ahimè, allora ho riprovato con un'altra parola, "wow", e ho scoperto che è nata nell'800 e ha avuto un picco di popolarità intorno agli anni Trenta.


L'orco cattivo

Norton Juster e Jules Feiffer, The Odious Ogre (Scholastic). Juster, un archetetto, e Feiffer, il noto disegnatore di comic strips hanno collaborato a scrivere e illustrare questo delizioso (e terrificante, a seconda dell'età da cui lo si legge) libretto, da regalare assolutamente a Natale.


Jaimy Gordon

Charles McGrath traccia un profilo, sul New York Times, della scrittrice che ha recentemente vinto il National Book Award con il suo ultimo romanzo, Lord of Misrule (McPherson), ambientato nel mondo delle gare di cavalli in West Virginia. "Ms. Gordon, 66, has taught writing for almost 30 years at Western Michigan University and lives by herself in a two-story house next to a lake here. Her husband, Peter Blickle, 17 years her junior, teaches German at the university and lives by another lake, about a 20-minute walk away. His wife goes over there most evenings with her dog and they have a glass of schnapps.

Ms. Gordon, who has a graduate degree in writing from Brown but also spent time working at a racetrack and briefly lived with an ex-convict who set fire to their apartment, has never been very conventional. She has a huge corona of springy, tightly curled hair that suggests prolonged exposure to a light socket, and a personality to match: forthright, disarming, uncensored. She is a wiser, chastened version of the reckless young female character who turns up in many of her books and never misses a chance to endanger herself".


David Wondrich, Punch: The Delights (and Dangers) of the Flowing Bowl (Perigee Trade). Storia del punch, raccontata in modo molto spiritoso e corredata da numerose ricette. Un must per natale.
Can you say a little bit more about the relationship between punch and class? Do you think it has some kind of inherently democratic appeal (because everyone is drinking from the same bowl)?

Punch began as a sailors' drink, where everyone onboard - officers and ordinary seamen alike - would partake together. It didn't always exercise that equalizing force, but it’s inherent in the format. A bowl of punch is a group effort, and people who choose not to partake find themselves at odds with the community. Most will put aside their standoffish ways and join in, but if they can’t or won’t, the nice thing is that nobody cares: all the more punch for us.


Steve Martin: An Object of Beauty

E' l'ultimo romanzo (Grand Central Publishing) dell'attore diventato scrittore, ed è ambientato nel mondo del collezionismo d'arte newyorchese (Martin stesso è un grande e appassionato collezionista) negli anni Novanta. "Martin is remarkably even-handed in his depiction of the art world, describing its leaps and plunges, how taste and culture and money affect it, as if he were writing about physics: 'Just as gravity distorts space, an important collector distorts aesthetics. The difference is that gravity distorts space eternally, and a collector distorts space for only a few years." Susan Salter Reynolds sul lat.


Reasons to Love New York

Ragione numero 10: perché è una città che rispetta e ama le mamme ebree. Woody Allen ricorda Elaine, la patron del noto ristorante sull'Upper West Side, che compare spesso nei suoi film di ambientati a Manhattan. Elaine è morta qualche giorno fa a 81 anni. "People didn't come for the food. That's for sure. I always had the theory that Elaine wouldn't have gotten as big a crowd if the food had been superb. They went up there to chat and socialize and because of Elaine's personality. She ran the place in a unique way. She was always there. You could go up and talk to her, but she also wandered around, going table to table. She'd sit down and chat with you and always had interesting things to say or funny anecdotes, because she knew everybody". nymag.


Le battaglie sull'Atlantico

Turner, The Wreck of the Minotaur
Simon Winchester, Atlantic: Great Sea Battles, Heroic Discoveries, Titanic Storms, and a Vast Ocean of a Million Stories (HarperCollins). Il ruolo dell'oceano Atlantico nella storia e la storia delle grandi battaglie sull'Atlantico. "The Atlantic has been the vehicle of wars and explorations since the time of the Phoenicians, who around 700 BC were the first to successfully strike out into the unknown from the relative bathtub of the Mediterranean, establishing trading posts on the Western coast of present-day Spain. Empires were born". lat.


Who will save the octothorpe?

The Big O is a sign with deep historical and cultural roots, part of our heritage. It didn't deserve the neglect it suffered in recent times. It's lived under many names: the hash, the crunch, the hex (that's in Singapore), the flash, the grid. In some circles it's called tic-tactoe, in others pig-pen. From a distance it looks like the sharp sign on a musical score. Whether you call it a pound sign or a number sign or anything else, it retains its identity. It's so majestically simple that it always looks good, even if drawn by someone utterly without graphic talent. Good old #. It can't go wrong. nationalpost.



In Harlem: A Century in Images (Skira Rizzoli), Thelma Golden, the enterprising director of the Studio Museum in Harlem, has, along with members of her staff - Thomas J, Lax, Lauren Haynes, and Elizabeth Gwinn - compiled a handsome and rich photographic collection that amounts as much to a study of a place as it is a study of black style. newyorker.


Google e-book shop

Google launched its long-awaited e-book venture yesterday, cleverly integrating their new e-book shop within the already popular Google Books. The three million e-books already available can be read on most devices that aren’t a Kindle. Google's e-book rating system will be based on reviews from the online bookworm community Goodreads.


L'uomo più letto del mondo (e insulti letterari)

E' Matthew Carter, l'ideatore di Verdana e Georgia. "Mr Carter conjured up both fonts in the 1990s for Microsoft, which released them with its Internet Explorer in the late 1990s and bundled them into Windows, before disseminating them as a free download." economist.

Virginia Woolf su Henry James: "I am reading Henry James…and feel myself as one entombed in a block of smooth amber", Teddy Roosevelt su Henry James: "A little emasculated mass of inanity", Mark Twain su Jane Austen: "Every time I read Pride and Prejudice, I want to dig her up and hit her over the skull with her own shin-bone", e Capote su Faulkner: "He was a great friend of mine. Well, as much as you could be a friend of his, unless you were a fourteen-year-old nymphet". Lawrence Dorfman, The Snark Handbook: Insult Edition: Comebacks, Taunts, and Effronteries (Skyhorse Publishing).


Hitchens da Tumortown

Continua la cronaca di Hitchens - sempre lucida, intelligente e sorprendentemente spiritosa - sulla sua malattia . Qui il grande giornalista si occupa di tracciare una sorta di etichetta su come parlare agli ammalati. "It's normally agreed that the question 'How are you?' doesn’t put you on your oath to give a full or honest answer. So when asked these days, I tend to say something cryptic like 'A bit early to say.' ... But it’s not really possible to adopt a stance of 'Don’t ask, don’t tell,' either. Like its original, this is a prescription for hypocrisy and double standards. Friends and relatives, obviously, don't really have the option of not making kind inquiries. One way of trying to put them at their ease is to be as candid as possible and not to adopt any sort of euphemism or denial. So I get straight to the point and say what the odds are. The swiftest way of doing this is to note that the thing about Stage Four is that there is no such thing as Stage Five." vanityfair.