Posts Tagged: William T. Vollmann

Propitiated Reading

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What I as a young enthusiast took for pell-mell freedom and chaos is in fact the result of careful orchestration and staging, within individual stories and in terms of the collection as a whole. This doesn’t mean the work is without its excesses—or that it doesn’t, at times, scan to me as self-indulgent, repetitive, inscrutable, etc.—but if you had asked me, before I revisited this book, why I no longer read Vollmann, I would have phrased my answer in terms of losing my tolerance for a certain kind of sloppiness; but now, having had my reunion, I must say that my complaints about Vollmann are not to be phrased in terms of his qualities as a writer but rather in terms of my taste as a reader.

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The Rumpus Sunday Book Blog Roundup

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This week, the book blogs are obsessed.

They really, really want to tell you everything about William Vollman and Thomas Pynchon and their new wondrous masterpieces of weird. I love both authors and look forward to reading both books, but this week, the blogs talked so incessantly about them that I will make this roundup a Vollman and Pynchon free zone, with one exception.

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William T. Vollmann Made Me A San Franciscan

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One of the more anticipated summer novels of the season is also probably one of the longest, most disturbing and most intimidating: Imperial, William T. Vollman’s mammoth exploration of the U.S.-Mexican border in Imperial County, CA. Clocking in at about 1300 pages the hardcover edition will retail for $55.oo and probably take more than the rest of the summer to read, and more than two more winters to fully digest and appreciate.

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