We can try to perform our inner lives, but we can’t actually reveal them. We can create a simulacrum, which is so much of what I see on social media, and that simulacrum is entertainment. It’s exciting because we all love the whiff of authenticity, and the more mediated our culture feels, the more we crave it, but we can’t actually give it away. We cannot actually break through the barrier of our individual aloneness. ...more
Simply put, the novel’s heart is not political but sensual. ...more
Tags: A Visit from the Goon Squad, Alexander Chee, american politics, Asian American, book review, capitalism, Chang-rae Lee, charles dickens, David Mitchell, Don DeLillo, Donna Tartt, Haruki Murakami, How to Write an Autobiographical Novel, identity, Jennifer Egan, joseph conrad, Killing Commendatore, Korean American, Min Jin Lee, my year abroad, Native Speaker, political conspiracy, political novels, Politics, R. O. Kwon, review, ryan lackey, Stephen King, Susan Choi, The Goldfinch, The Great Gatsby
Kate Reed Petty discusses her debut novel, TRUE STORY.
Tags: #metoo, A Visit from the Goon Squad, Cloud Atlas, debut novel, feminism, feminist, form, gender inequality, genre, genre fiction, genre writing, graphic novel, humor, humor writing, Kate Reed Petty, literary tropes, Making the Leap, narrative structure, Rape culture, screenplays, sexual assault, Silence of the Lambs, storytelling, The Leak, TJ Fuller, tropes, True Story, writing humor
Namwali Serpell discusses her debut novel, THE OLD DRIFT.
Tags: A Visit from the Goon Squad, Africa, afrofuturism, Afrofuturist, Afropolitan, Cloud Atlas, colonialism, colonization, David Livingstone, debut novel, first book, genre, historical fiction, Hogarth Press, hybrid genre, magical realism, metaphor, mixed race, Namwali Serpell, Nana Ekua Brew-Hammond, Pedro Almodovar, Racism, speculative fiction, The Brief Wondrous Life of Oscar Wao, The Old Drift, zambia
Sharlene Teo discusses her debut novel, PONTI.
Tags: A Visit from the Goon Squad, adolescence, adultery, Alice Munro, Carson McCullers, Daisy Johnson, debut novel, Divisadero, Everything Under, Film, first book, folktales, Han Kang, Jennifer Egan, jhumpa lahiri, Mandopop, Maria Dahvana Headley, michael ondaatje, Music, Ponti, Pontianak, pop music, Roberto Rodriguez, Russell Lee, Sharlene Teo, shoegaze, Singapore, superstition, teenagers, The HEart is a lonely hunter, The Mere Wife, The Vegetarian, The Waves, Too Much Happiness, True Singapore Ghost Stories, Unaccustomed Earth, virginia woolf
Ben Gwin discusses his debut novel,
Clean Time: The True Story of Ronald Regan Middleton, the book’s unique structure, and writing satire. ...more
Tags: A Visit from the Goon Squad, addiction, addicts, alcoholic, alcoholism, anxiety, Ben Gwin, Burrow Press, Clean Time, cultural criticism, drug addiction, drugs, editing, editors, humor, humor writing, hyperbole, narrative structure, Pale Fire, postmodern, reality tv, recovery, rehab, Ryan Rivas, satire, The Brief and Wondrous Life of Oscar Wao
Melissa Fraterrigo discusses her new novel-in-stories,
Glory Days, writing speculative fiction, and how our formative years influence us later in life. ...more
Tags: A Visit from the Goon Squad, Alicia Christensen, All the Real Girls, amusement parks, Ann Pancake, Bonnie Jo Campbell, Breece D'J Pancake, Cathy Day, Cedar Point, Chicago, Christine Sneed, Circus in Winter, clairvoyants, Cormac McCarthy, Daniel Woodrell, Diane Gilliam Fisher, elizabeth strout, Gabrielle Calvocoressi, ghosts, Gillian Welch, Glory Days, Indiana, Jennifer Egan, Kent Haruf, Lafayette Writers Studio, leukemia, magical realism, Melissa Fraterrigo, Michelle Hoover, Midwest, Nebraska, nick drake, novels-in-stories, olive kitteridge, Patty Griffin, poetry, Sharon Olds, Sherwood Anderson, short fiction, short stories, speculative fiction, Stewart O’Nan, teaching writing, University of Nebraska Press, Winesburg Ohio, Winter's Bone
Everyone, no matter how strong or independent, is subject to forces like war, or time, or the claims of family. ...more
Tags: A Visit from the Goon Squad, Brooklyn, Brooklyn Naval Yard, Emily Gray Tedrowe, Jennifer Egan, Joni Mitchell, Manhattan Beach, National Book Critics Circle, Pulitzer, the Great Depression, Van Gogh
Can domestic life and rock & roll flourish together in contemporary novels? Should they?
Tags: A Visit from the Goon Squad, art edwards, Brian Costello, Bud Smith, Dana Spiotta, Eleanor Henderson, F-250, High Fidelity, Losing in Gainesville, Nick Hornby, Rob Yardumian, rock & roll, rock and roll, roddy doyle, Stacey D'erasmo, Stone Arabia, Ten Thousand Saints, The Commitments, The Guts, The Sound of Songs Across the Water, The Wishbones, Tom Perrotta, Wonderland
Another wonderful illustrated review from HORN!