On light & liquid sentences

(TIDYING BY READING, PART 3) Years ago, I bought a copy of Gerald Murnane’s book The Plains (1982), a novel summarised in following words by the publisher: The Plains is a short novel about a young filmmaker who travels to a fictive country far within Australia, where his failure to make a film is perhaps…

W.G. Sebald – short biobibliographical notes

W.G. Sebald, in full Winfried Georg Sebald, (born May 18, 1944, Wertach, Allgäu, Germany—died December 14, 2001, Norwich, England), German-English novelist and scholar who was known for his haunting, non-chronologically constructed stories. Sebald’s work imaginatively explored themes of memory, especially as they related to the Holocaust. His novels include Schwindel, Gefühle (1990; Vertigo), Die Ausgewanderten (1992; The Emigrants), Die Ringe des Saturn (1995; The Rings of Saturn), Logis…

Why Read Sebald?

He is utterly despairing, particularly in The Rings of Saturn. It’s terrible, beautiful, and there’s no hope.          — Ali Smith I’ve been here before, at my desk, with all the books by W.G Sebald (which unfortunately isn’t that many) in front of me. My plan is to (re)read The Rings of Saturn. Did I read it…

Between a Wolf and a Dog

(TIDYING BY READING, PART 2) There must have been someone here – in this interconnected world of ours – recommending me this book, but now I no longer remember who. I probably started reading «Between a Wolf and a Dog» more than a year ago, but then it slipped away, surfacing again in the big move.   «Between…

“I never really separated painting and literature.”

Claire Daigle writes: In 1959 Twombly executed some of the most spare works of his career, among them the 24 drawings that comprise Poems to the Sea, done on the coast of Italy. What order of poems, punctuated with numerals and question marks, are these? The sea is reduced to horizon line and word, scribblings and…

truth be told

Though there’s an industry built on telling you otherwise, there are few real joys to middle age. The only perk I can see is that, with luck, you’ll acquire a guest room. — David Sedaris (2018)

Ocean-chart

  He had brought a large map representing the sea, Without the least vestige of land: And the crew were much pleased when they found it to be A map they could all understand. … A perfect and absolute blank!   Lewis Carroll The Hunting of the Snark (1876)  

Intimacy is not a quality in itself

I have just read a poorly written book about abuse and strained family relations. A novel which, to my surprise, is winning a lot of praise and awards here in Norway these days. A kind of book that I suspect get most of its attention for what it possibly reveals about public figures (even if…