It’s true I haven’t been blogging, but I’ve certainly been reading books, as you can see here.
Something about the writers:
- Pascal Quignard is a very respected writer in France who, perhaps a bit like Le Clézio, hasn’t for some reason been much translated into English, which, going by this particular novel, I find peculiar.
- Claude Simon is another French writer – in fact, I’m sure you’ve heard of him. Having suffered with the Nouveau Roman many times, I was half dreading reading Simon, but in fact found him wonderful – found him, in fact, very little like the Nouveau Roman (if indeed, going by the strict definition of Nouveau Roman, anything can be said to be like it). As Wikipedia in fact suggests, he feels much closer to Faulkner than, say, Robbe-Grillet.
- Juan Carlos Onetti, a Uruguayan, one of the most revered and influential of Latin American novelists but, since he is pre-Boom, almost entirely ignored. Like Simon above, writes with a great love of Faulkner. (Not at all magic realist).
- Vladimir Odoevsky, a Russian – was as successful in his time as Gogol, but largely forgotten now – which is a pity, because he is interestingly experimental and had a pre-Freudian fascination with the unconscious.
- Max Frisch, a Swiss writer – I’d recommend in particular, not this book necessarily, but Homo Faber and I’m Not Stiller.
- Mia Couto, a Mozambiquian writer and generally to be found on any list of possible Nobel-prize winners.
- Boris Pilnyak, a Russian writer and critic of Stalin. He was killed in the Terror of the late 30s.
- Iharu Saikaku, c17th Japanese writer who concentrated on the floating world.
- The mostly overlooked English writer and stream-of-consciousness pioneer (at least in English), Dorothy Richardson.
- And lastly, Roberto Pazzi, who has the least informative Wikipedia page.