“In Brodsky’s view, politics was one level of human existence, but it was a low rung. The business of poetry, he thought, is to ‘indicate something more … the size of the whole ladder.’ He held that ‘art is not a better, but an alternative existence … not an attempt to escape reality but theContinue reading “Bookish Links — May 2018”
For as long as I can remember, I’ve loved the Greek myths. What began as a school assignment quickly turned into a passion as I began to learn more and more about the classical world. I dabbled a little in other mythologies (mostly Egyptian and Irish), but as far as I was concerned, nothing could match the beauty and the grandeur of the Greek stories.
I still stand by that, but I’m now finding out that the Norse myths are a lot of fun too.
I had a birthday recently. I don’t like to name the exact date online because identity theft, but what I can tell you is that it has passed and I got some books as a result of it. Here’s the list: 1: Hammer Is the Prayer: Selected Poems by Christian Wiman Wiman is one ofContinue reading “Birthday Books”
This is one of those books that I bought and then stuck in my bedroom somewhere, never to be seen again until several months later when I finally decided to read it. I have no idea what took me so long. I mean, I had read Gaiman’s short stories before, so I knew him to be more than capable of creating mind-bending fantasy worlds, or a real-world story teeming with dread, or a very simple story that nevertheless breaks your heart. So I shouldn’t have been surprised when he did all three at once.
In this article from Harper’s, Annie Dillard reflects on a lifetime of receiving fan mail from many, um, special people. Given my newfound interest in “The Love Song of J. Alfred Prufrock,” I’ve found it much easier to appreciate this essay by Karen Swallow Prior on “When T. S. Eliot Invented the Hipster.” From theContinue reading “Bookish Links — December 2016”
As if you needed another reason to read books: it turns out reading might help you live longer. This month, a previously-undiscovered castle was excavated in the UK . . . and it might be tied to the historical King Arthur. Remember Andrew Gulli? The guy who found and published a lost F. Scott FitzgeraldContinue reading “Bookish Links—August 2016”
As part of the “Shakespeare Lives” festivities, the British Council launched a new feature on their site called “Mix the Play.” Basing this feature around Act 3, Scene 1 of A Midsummer Night’s Dream, you choose how the scene will look and sound and the site returns a video of that scene performed as youContinue reading “Bookish Links — June 2016”
With Harper Lee’s passing earlier this month, the internet (or at least, the nerdy internet circles in which I travel) exploded with tributes to and articles about her. I found this one, about her unpublished true crime novel, especially intriguing. We also lost Umberto Eco this month (on the same day as Harper Lee, noContinue reading “Bookish Links — February 2016”
Please, Lord, don’t let this turn out to be a hoax: C. S. Lewis worked for MI-6 during World War II. A new internet error code, one denoting government censorship, was added to the books earlier this month, and, as is only fitting, it was named in honor of a certain author whom we allContinue reading “Bookish Links — December 2015”
As Christmas looms nearer still, I thought I’d dig up this old gem. This time last year, Neil Gaiman was asked to give a reading of Dickens’s A Christmas Carol at the New York City Public Library, using the selfsame manuscript from which Dickens himself gave readings back when. Below is a recording of thatContinue reading “Charles Dickens’s A Christmas Carol, Read by Neil Gaiman”
So, I somehow forgot that yesterday was the last day of the month and did not put up my “Bookish Links” post on time. Better late than never, right? October 25 being the sixtieth anniversary of the publication of Ray Bradbury’s The October Country, The Paris Review ran this piece on the book and itsContinue reading “Bookish Links — October 2015”
All this talk of quotations puts me in mind of a very famous one, supposedly by G. K. Chesterton. No doubt you’ve seen it floating around Pinterest, Twitter, etc. by now: It certain sounds like Chesterton, and it’s in line with things he did say, but it’s not Chesterton. It is in fact the workContinue reading “The Time Neil Gaiman Invented a G. K. Chesterton Quote”