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The Complete Prose of Marianne Moore
4.45
I could never, nor ever would I want to, read this book from beginning to end. I open it on occasion to relish the pleasures of manner as destiny, of ...more
not set
Jan 13, 2008
 
O Pioneers! (Great Plains Trilogy, #1)
3.81
I love Willa Cather, but I found O Pioneers! is a bit melodramatic and calculated -- too earnest and sentimental, and the characters rather one-dimens ...more
Jan 2008
Jan 27, 2008
 
The Sluts
3.89
Cooper's material here -- violent intergenerational gay sex -- is not for every one. But The Sluts brilliantly captures the seductive dangers of onlin ...more
not set
Jan 05, 2008
 
Stories in the Worst Way
4.18
Each sentence surprises and, even better, undermines me. Each sentence makes poetry blush, that prose should so outstrip its ability to compress an en ...more
not set
Jan 05, 2008
 
I Love Dick
4.05
Compulsively readable, I Love Dick is a diary of a lover's self-immolation that offers bracing takes on feminism, monogamy, love, careerism, and autho ...more
Mar 2005
Jan 05, 2008
 
Hotel Theory
3.92
If your funny bone resonates to the pitch of camp, you may find this novel irresistible:

Liberace surfaced, shook his canine bone-dry, towel-wrapped h
...more
not set
Oct 11, 2007
 
Extinction: A Novel
4.32
Dostoyevsky + Kafka + Wittgenstein + Huysman (something camp and hysterical in the misanthropy).

Am I not supposed to find this deeply, outrageously fu
...more
Dec 2007
Jan 02, 2008
 
Concrete
4.16
Neuroses and neuresthenia pitched to sublimity.
not set
Jan 02, 2008
 
Frisk
3.73
My fourth favorite novel of Cooper's (after Guide, Try, and The Sluts). I wouldn't say that Cooper is an acquired taste; he's a rarefied taste. Not "d ...more
not set
Jan 05, 2008
 
A Nest of Ninnies
3.57
"To me," Alice said, "off-white is just another word for gray."

Divine. A camp novel combining the wryness of Ivy Compton-Burnett and the mise-en-scene
...more
not set
Feb 07, 2008
 
Chelsea Girls
4.19
I read it in one or two gulps. A bit difficult to get into, with its fractured chronology and mosaic effects. But some really great turns. Myles is so ...more
not set
Jul 07, 2010
 
Camera Lucida: Reflections on Photography
3.96
I like to imagine Barthes meeting Mapplethorpe, whose pictures he includes in this book. Was he seduced, or did he observe him from across a crowded p ...more
not set
Jan 13, 2008
 
Slouching Towards Bethlehem
4.25
Four stars for two essays: "On Keeping a Notebook" and "Goodbye to All That," required reading for aspiring writers, drama queens, fussbudgets.

Didion
...more
not set
Jan 05, 2008
 
Roland Barthes
4.09
My favorite book by Barthes. Autobiography in the third person. Or to adapt a phrase by Barthes, the autobiographical without the autobiography. Barth ...more
not set
Jan 13, 2008
 
Lifting Belly
4.24
This is middle-of-the-road Stein, not too accessible, not too experimental: associative. Erotic in its rhythmics.

The phrase, in certain circles (hous
...more
not set
Jan 13, 2008
 
Closer
3.81
A strong first novel by a powerful writer -- though arguably, still working out the kinks. Disturbing but also charming. Not a bad place to start for ...more
not set
Jan 05, 2008
 
The Voice Imitator
3.96
I enjoy how the objects of satire in these parabular stories slide off the tongue, elude the palate, emerge only in aftertaste -- an aftertaste that o ...more
Dec 2007
Jan 02, 2008
 
Alfred and Guinevere
3.86
Charming and sophisticated. A view of adult affairs through the eyes of two precocious children (the title characters). Am homage to James's What Mais ...more
not set
Feb 07, 2008
 
Mythologies
4.11
Brilliant essays -- a model for cultural studies. Barthes always moves towards paradox insight: Striptease is anerotic, margarine is . . . I forget, b ...more
not set
Jan 13, 2008
 
Happy Days
3.93
With global warming, new relevance. Winnie, buried to her waist in earth, exposed to broiling sun, quotes The Winter's Tale with mordant irony: "Fear ...more
not set
Jan 27, 2008
 
Orlando: A Biography
3.83
Better in concept than in reality. Starts strong but definitely too long. Still, what a concept. And without Orlando, where would Tilda Swinton be?
not set
Jan 05, 2008
 
How to Write
4.13
A mixed bag, a tough row to hoe, all that jazz. Does contain everyone's favorite Steinism: "A sentence is not emotional a paragraph is."
not set
Jan 13, 2008
 
Period
3.79
Cooper's great, but this is not my favorite. Guide, The Sluts, Try, and Frisk are more accessible, representative.
not set
Jan 05, 2008
 
The Diary of James Schuyler
4.52
Beautiful and moving -- many entries are poems. But little gossip -- probably interesting only to Schuyler completists.
Jan 2008
Jan 05, 2008
 
The Year of Magical Thinking
3.82
I love the "cool customer" leitmotif. Joan knows herself.

Overrated? Somebody's got to have the big career.
not set
Jan 05, 2008
 
Great Sonnets
4.13
I was struck by how fanciful the sonnets are, how unabashedly in love with artifice. Pure virtuosity.
not set
Jan 27, 2008
 
Mawrdew Czgowchwz
3.93
Paterian, hothouse prose. Composition as ecstasy. Diva worship as plot. Best in throwaway lines.
not set
Jan 02, 2008
 
Play It as It Lays
3.87
Fun! Glamorous dissolution. Read it during jury duty, couldn't put it down.
not set
Jan 05, 2008
 
The Loser
4.11
Exposes the tolls of aesthetic perfection, even as it embodies them.
Dec 2007
Jan 02, 2008
 
Tender Buttons
3.79
"Sugar is not a vegetable"
not set
Jan 13, 2008
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