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Jonathan Lethem

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Jasun Horsley Podcast conversation with Jonathan Lethem and accompanying article:

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Imagine him even imagining he has to defend Dissident Gardens. It is complex, it is rich, it is a sharing with us of not only an apparently intimate family history, but sharing a history that's pretty much been hidden from us all. I love him talking about the men being pretty much buried by the women. I think he's selling himself short. I think the men survive without women -- and what good does that do them? Love the comparison early on of Stalin to an Old Testament God.

I opened this thinking it was going to be on Chronic City. But I'm thrilled to have heard him speak about DG.

Thanks for posting!

Jasun Horsley U R welcome, glad you liked it; I put it in the Chronic City section because that's the book which gets the most attention but it's really more about Lethem's inner world and creative process, & how it overlaps with my own. Part two up tomorrow.

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Hi, Jasun. Yes, of all the contemporary writers, I personally find Lethem the very best! I believe, I do, this constant sniping is one more sign of our uncivility as a society. How grateful we should be for someone like him (and there are others), who work so very hard to create for us, of us, an art. Why don't we revere them more? It's hard to understand, isn't it?

Jasun Horsley hi Ellen,

which sniping in particular? Is JL being sniped?


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I don't know how much you move around on this site, Goodreads. There are a lot of people who take potshots at anyone they can, no, not Lethem in particular. Actually, how funny, I may have been replying to myself -- I think I'm the "Deleted User" who said "Imagine him having to defend Dissident Gardens." I deleted my account after I was supported by some poetry nazis for a second-rate poem that happened to have some haphazard rhyme. I'm just here too much, read too many comments by people who, frankly (and asking who am I to judge) but by people who are reading above their level. Just generally depressed by the venomous readers I so often find here. Depressed, too, that I just wrote a one-star review of Franzen's new book. I'm sure that if I gave it time, I would see what he wanted me to see.

Ignore me. Bad star alignment these days!

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Nabokov, for instance. I'm beginning to believe one should have to be licensed by some arcane coven of literateurs to be allowed to read him at all.

Jasun Horsley thanks for the clarification; i don't hang out here much, too busy writing!

Michael Sussman I'm certainly a fan of his writing, and enjoyed getting to know Lethem at a writing retreat, but I have to admit that I prefer his earlier novels, especially Motherless Brooklyn and Amnesia Moon.

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