Lafcadio Hearn’s encounter with transience and crossing borders
Israel’s ‘first family’ reimagined in a hilariously conceived campus comedy
John Berryman: a university poet in a society not much interested in poetry
Dickens: master of imagination and verbal fancy footwork
Le tiers temps, by Maylis Besserie, Gallimard, 184 pp, €18, ISBN: 978-2072878398 On May 11th, the week that bookshops opened in France after the first lockdown, there was an item on the evening radio news: the Goncourt prize for a first novel was awarded to Le tiers temps, a story about Samuel Beckett’s last months in […]
The supernatural tale thrived for over 100 years from about 1830, but now seems to exist only as pastiche. In the Internet age, no voice need be silent or stifled any more, even if no one is listening. The ghost story, let’s face it, is not sleeping but dead. And probably best left that way.
One of the consistent pleasures of Don DeLillo’s fiction is the sense of its author’s being attuned to frequencies of catastrophe that hum beneath the roar of the everyday: the toxic cloud on the horizon, the gunman in a lonely room, the ominous twitch in distant currency markets.
The extent to which poets play on language varies enormously, but in Geraldine Clarkson’s debut, in which it might be said she uses wit as a palate cleanser, the reader is in for a feast of juxtaposition, unusual metaphor and conceit, highly charged lines and double entendres.
Martin Amis’s work can be understood as a series of riffs on the base elements of male friendship: rivalry, companionship, sublimated desire. The bullshit quotient is in some ways an index of the bullshit quotient of male friendships, or maybe just the bullshit quotient of men.