By Paul Auster
From the writer of "The big apple Trilogy", "Moon Palace" and "The booklet of Illusions", comes a hugely own number of essays, prefaces and low items written for magazines and newspapers. Ranging in topic from Walter Raleigh to Kafka; Hawthorne to high-wire artist Philippe Petit; conceptual artist Sophie Calle to his personal typewriter; and the area alternate middle disaster to his loved big apple urban itself, Auster screens his commonly used aptitude, wit and perception.
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For women writers, you can add solipsistic and confessional. Maybe that’s part of the reason Joan Didion, who’s been called all those things but for whom cool is surely the most frequently applied adjective, has never been just an inspirational fgure. She has been an object of aspirational longing. Revered (worshipped, in many cases) as much for her glamorously aloof public persona as for her infectious, revolutionary-in-its-time prose style, Didion was—and remains—famous in a way that writers seldom are anymore (and, though some of today’s embittered literary types like to believe otherwise, seldom were even back then).
Reading it is akin to enjoying a mimosa-filled brunch and then settling in to watch The Best Exotic Marigold Hotel with an old—but stylishly well-preserved—pal. And what’s wrong with that? Remember, Jong is the irrepressible readerturned-writer who got her start making none of the “snotty divisions you learn to make later” among literary genres. She knows this book may take some abuse, especially since the messenger comes bearing news that will send some for their guns: women over 60 want sex. Even in her 70s, Jong remains the brash, randy adventurer whose work curs of the world may piss on, but who isn’t about to let that stop her.
Tom, though born in Colorado, is temperamentally a Midwesterner, a denomination that in Franzen’s world, as a character in The Corrections explains, means “hopeful or enthusiastic or community-spirited”—in short, undisillusioned. Anabel’s woundedness and oppositionality, which she seems to prize for their own sake, send Tom careening into the State. “This was the T H E AT L A N T IC SEPTEMBER 2015 33 first of the ten thousand times I had the experience of not quite following Anabel’s logic,” he recalls of his initial encounter with her.
Collected Prose by Paul Auster