Category Archives: Literary Perspectives

Spaces Around People’s Empty Core

Few instances elicit a vocal response on the CNN news ticker, but on September 13, 2008 which fell on a Saturday, I murmured an audible, “No.”  David Foster Wallace had died by his own hand the previous night.  Amidst the inane celebrity dribble that … Continue reading

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Expelled from Pastoral

Without any spoilers, my mental snythesis of Roth’s American Pastoral. It won the Pulitzer Prize in 1997. Continue reading

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French secrets

Tatiana de Rosnay approached German occupied Paris from an event infrequently cited: Vélodrome d’Hiver in Sarah’s Key.  Called the Vél’ d’Hiv’ roundups of 1942, journalist and exasperated wife Julia Jarmond investigates this blight of French complicity and eagerness during World … Continue reading

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Queasy reactions to Némirovsky’s renderings

Anti-Semitic labels follow Irène Némirovsky’s (b. 1903 – d. 1942) publications.  Her death at a concentration camp tempers criticism because it is difficult to process a person who displayed harsh prejudicial views of Jews with the same individual who died … Continue reading

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Endless Questions and Meandering Self-Scrutiny

The New Yorker review of Howard Jacobson’s The Finkler Question left traces that reignited when my mother asked for research materials and reviews for The Finkler Question.  She had volunteered to lead her Book Club’s latest pick.  Eureka, I knew … Continue reading

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Graceful Liberties

Shortlisted for the Booker, Alias Grace enriched skeleton facts and inspired poems surrounding the famous Victorian murderess Grace Marks.  Atwood used Spiritualism and mental health practitioners as a way to develop a fuller rendering of Grace Marks.  Since Marks had been spared … Continue reading

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July in December

This short story collection was recommended to me by a spiritually mindful person offering a certain voice to the smatterings of thoughts that hound me daily.  He presented a nondescript cover with a long title.  Miranda July?  I had not … Continue reading

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A return to great storytelling

An established book is sometimes doubly satisfying following heaps of misogynistic material.  As appreciated in maturing wines, older Man Booker winners are safe bets.  After selecting gifted writer Margaret Atwood and her certifiably lauded book, I intend to explore her … Continue reading

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What type of Freedom?

Convincing character psychologies cannot pull the unsavory sense of doom and moral turpitude from this sizable tome.  Freedom (2010) authored by Jonathan Franzen waited nine years to devise the follow-up to his grand success Corrections (2001).  In 2001, he effectively … Continue reading

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Philip Milton Roth / Alexander Portnoy (1933 – )

Disheartened reviews plagued Roth’s newest novel Nemesis (2010); thus, it seemed appropriate to focus on one triumph Portnoy’s Complaint. It is tempting to align both the author Philip Roth and protagonist Alex Portnoy in perversity and mindsets.  Biographical details remain … Continue reading

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