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""A story assembled from everyday objects, unassumingly and quietly, that stuns and horrifies by increments...The Canal may look, at first glance, like a love story, but it harnesses the power of parable." John Wray, author of Lowboy.

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Monday, 2 March 2009

Quarterly Conversation . . .

All this at The Quarterly Conversation:

Yalo by Elias Khoury
The Way Through Doors by Jesse Ball
The Semantics of Murder by Aifric Campbell
The Great Weaver from Kashmir by Halldor Laxness
King Cophetua by Julien Gracq
Blind Speed by Josh Barkan

From the Editors: On the Demise of Publishing, Reading, and Everything Else

Books are commodities, and as we head into the sharpest economic downturn since 1982—indeed, quite possibly since 1932—publishers are feeling the pain. The reactions of many of the industry leaders do not instill confidence, and so we must ask: What’s really dying here?

Essay by The Editors of The Quarterly Conversation

CONTEST: Win Bookstore Credit at Seminary Co-op’s Online Store
For our spring contest, we’ve joined forces with a 58-year-old Chicago institution: the customer-owned Seminary Co-op Bookstore. Details here.

Essay by The Quarterly Conversation Contests

Crossing the Zone: Mathias Énard’s 517-Page, One-Sentence Train Journey
Published in France in 2008, Zone has already been called a novel of the new century. This one-sentence dissection of a half-century of war and atrocity will be published in English next year. François Monti tells what it’s about, and if it’s worth all the fuss.

Essay by François Monti

Susan Sontag’s Cabinet of Curiosities
Susan Sontag wrote “I write partly in order to change myself; it’s an instrument I use.” Lauren Elkin reads Sontag’s recently published diaries and finds how the writer developed her identity and her style.

Essay by Lauren Elkin

Confronting the Murmur in Brian Evenson’s Last Days
Brian Evenson once stated that he writes with an “ethical blankness.” Matt Bell considers how this blankness drags the reader into Evenson’s most recent novel, the dark, noirish Last Days.

Essay by Matt Bell

Coetzee in the Promised Land
The 1972 novel Promised Land might have been the first “alternate future” book of post-apartheid South Africa. Matthew Cheney shows how it sheds new night on the work of J.M. Coetzee, and of other South African novelists.
Essay by Matthew Cheney

Ten Theses on the Nature of Metafiction (And a Parenthetical Review of Salvador Plascencia’s The People of Paper)
George Fragopoulos argues that in The People of Paper, Salvador Plascencia closes the divide between metafiction and realism.

Essay by George Fragopoulos

Intro to E-Lit: How Electronic Literature Makes Printed Literature Richer
Electronic literature is commonly seen as an odd offshoot from printed literature. William Patrick Wend shows that e-lit is a rich and thriving art form, and one that has much to say about bounded literature.
Essay by William Patrick Wend

Girly Man by Charles Bernstein
Review by John Herbert Cunningham

The Alphabet by Ron Silliman
Review by John Herbert Cunningham

My Father’s Wives by Jose Eduardo Agualusa
Review by E.J. Van Lanen

Ghosts by Cesar Aira
Review by Scott Bryan Wilson

Bonsai by Alejandro Zambra
Review by Elizabeth Wadell

Best of Contemporary Mexican Fiction by Alvaro Uribe
Review by Scott Esposito

Oblomov by Ivan Goncharov
Review by Karen Vanuska

White Guard by Mikhail Bulgakov
Review by Karen Vanuska

The Fat Man and Infinity & Other Writings by Antonio Lobo Antunes
Review by Chad Post

The Easy Chain by Evan Dara
Review by Scott Bryan Wilson

Berlin: City of Smoke by Jason Lutes
Review by Nicole Gluckstern

Fuzz & Pluck: Splitsville by Ted Stearn
Review by Sacha Arnold

The Assignment by Friedrich Dürrenmatt
Review by Jordan Anderson

Invite by Glen Pourciau
Review by Monica McFawn

Happy Families by Carlos Fuentes
Review by Meg Sefton

Woods and Chalices by Tomaz Salamun
Review by Levi Stahl

The Journal of Jules Renard by Jules Renard
Review by Billy Thompson

Five Spice Street by Can Xue
Review by John Madera

John Ashbery: Collected Poems 1956-1987 by John Ashbery
Review by John Herbert Cunningham

my vocabulary did this to me: The Collected Poetry of Jack Spicer by Jack Spicer
Review by John Herbert Cunningham

You Must Be This Happy to Enter by Elizabeth Crane
Review by Barrett Hathcock

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