Sam’s Casual Reading


The Letters of Samuel Beckett: Volume 2, 1941–1956 was published recently by Cambridge University Press, and on its blog the publisher has compiled a list of books Beckett read during those years, culled from his letters, with commentary from the Irishman.

Here are a few of his judgments:

“I liked it very much indeed, more than anything for a long time”—about The Catcher in the Rye

“Try and read it, I think it is important”—re: The Stranger

“Damned good piece of work”—The 628-E8 by Octave Mirbeau

“I felt at home, too much so – perhaps that is what stopped me from reading on. Case closed there and then”— about Kafka’s The Castle

“I read it for the fourth time the other day with the same old tears in the same old places”—Theodor Fontane’s Effi Briest.

You can read more here.

Kevin Nolan writes essays and fiction. More from this author →