Emmett Stinson’s new book, Satirizing Modernism: Aesthetic Autonomy, Romanticism, and the Avant-Garde, comes out in June, and appears to be the first major critical work to wrestle with Evan Dara’s The Easy Chain, along with Thomas Love Peacock’s Nightmare Abbey, Wyndham Lewis’s The Apes of God, William Gaddis’s The Recognitions, and Gilbert Sorrentino’s Imaginative Qualities of Actual… Read More Satirizing Modernism
Earlier this year, I happened upon the audiobook of William Gaddis’s JR, a 37-hour tour de force narrated by Nick Sullivan which is essential listening for anyone seeking a deeper appreciation of this prescient radio tower of Babel. While I don’t absorb enough audiobooks to provide a trustworthy opinion, it’s clear why this title is so highly… Read More Counterevidence
On copyedits and compromise, through the lens of Evan Dara’s The Easy Chain.… Read More Author/Editor
Without knowing exactly where to start, I’ll begin at the beginning and wend my way through this marvelous and baffling book, which contains some of the best prose of this millennium, along with savage stretches that test and exasperate even the most faithful readers. Like its perorative predecessor The Lost Scrapbook, The Easy Chain reveals new facets… Read More Preparing for The Easy Chain
Last week, Ben Roth published an essay on The Millions entitled “Against Readability,” which was provocative in a fairly predictable way. But as he drew lines between the praiseworthy (e.g. Tom McCarthy’s Remainder) and the forgettable (Donna Tartt’s The Goldfinch), it pushed a button that prompted a version of this kneejerk comment: As someone who… Read More Against Readability?
An interview with Jose Luis Amores, who translated Evan Dara’s first novel, The Lost Scrapbook.… Read More El Cuaderno Perdido: An Interview with José Luis Amores
I’m in the midst of a re-read of Dara’s The Easy Chain, which has been slowed by the furious underlining and marginalianizing that the story demands. There are threads that I plan to pursue in future posts (e.g. Has there been a better novel involving Chicago in the last 20 years? The parallels between the rise… Read More The Easy Chain