On Looking: Essays
“Purpura is the real deal, and so is every successive sentence in this collection. A cornucopiac vocabulary is married to a strict economy of expression; an offbeat curiosity is married to the courage of difficult witnessing. . . .”—Albert Goldbarth
“Purpura's prose is a system of delicate shocks—leaps and connections and syncopated revelations, all in the service of the
Makes me wonder whether there is a point at which self-awareness becomes a detriment. As a narrative strategy, definitely.
Nevertheless, I don't mean to speak much harshly about this book. The essays are (mostly) woven delicately, and bring the world to sharp focus around Purpura's shifting center within observation of it.
Not li ...more
Purpura's grasp of observation is stunning - she notices the way animals are beautifully crushed by cars, how plastic grocery bags caught on a ...more