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Posts Tagged ‘Meghan O’Rourke’

Book Blasphemy, and Other News

March 12, 2013 | by

Brian-Dettmar-Paris-Review

  • Books carved with surgical tools
  • Related: “I’m sure what I did was completely blasphemous, but y’all ... it turned out really cool.” Wallpapering with Faulkner. (His pages, not him.)
  • How many copies need to move to qualify a book as an Amazon bestseller? PW does the math and finds: not that many
  • Speaking of inflation! In the UK, the sinister-sounding “inflation basket” indicates that people are buying more e-books, less champagne
  • “These are fundamentally probing, even discomfiting, books.” Meghan O’Rourke pays tribute to Renata Adler. 

 

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Defiance: A Literary Benefit to Rebuild Red Hook

November 8, 2012 | by

Last week, the waterfront neighborhood of Red Hook, Brooklyn, was one of the areas shattered by superstorm Sandy. On Wednesday, November 14, join host Kurt Andersen; musicians Steve Earle and Stew; novelists Joseph O’Neill, Sam Lipsyte, and Rivka Galchen; nonfiction luminaries Phillip Lopate, Chuck Klosterman, Philip Gourevitch, Meghan O’Rourke, Deborah Baker, Robert Sullivan, and others for Defiance: A Literary Benefit to Rebuild Red Hook. Readings will center on the themes of recovery and rebuilding, drawing on more than two centuries of literature about the historic neighborhood.

The event takes its name from Fort Defiance, the revolutionary-era citadel that once loomed over Red Hook, keeping ferry routes clear for General George Washington’s Continental Army. One hundred percent of the proceeds from the evening will be divided between two nonprofit organizations that are leading Red Hook’s post-Sandy recovery, Red Hook Initiative and Restore Red Hook. Learn more and buy tickets here.

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Talking Dirty with Our Fall Issue

September 6, 2011 | by

It avails not, neither earthquake nor hurricane nor suspended subway service— The Paris Review comes out on time. It’s a doozy, if we say so ourselves, and not to be missed. Subscribe now, or renew, and receive a limited-edition Paris Review café au lait cup. You can sip in style while you enjoy a full year of fiction, poetry, and prose.

In the fall issue:

Nicholson Baker discusses the pleasures of writing smut:

Sexual arousal itself is a kind of drug. It has also turned out to be one of the few plots I can actually handle. If I imagine a man and a woman talking, and I know that later on they’re going to be taking some of their clothes off, that pulls me merrily along ... The basic boy-meets-girl plot in which they talk a little bit and then they have some kind of slightly bizarre sex—that plot I can do. Other plots are harder.

 

Terry Castle collects strangers’ children:

So many children—most of them obnoxious-looking. It’s a fact: 99 percent of all photographs ever taken have little brats in them. Mugging, leering, pushing one another. Wielding fearsome Betsy Wetsy 147 dolls. Pouting in pajamas on the floor over unsatisfactory Christmas presents. Prancing egotistically. The sort of kids that Wittgenstein, back when he was a mean, half-demented schoolmaster in the Austrian Alps or wherever it was—long before Cambridge and the Tractatus—would have walloped upside the head and thrown in the snow. How is it, indeed, that I have so many of them? More, even, than Joyce Carol Oates has written novels. And not one, needless to say, did I get for free.

Plus …

Geoff Dyer on Tarkovsky. Lydia Davis on translating Flaubert. The Dennis Cooper interview. Fiction by Roberto Bolaño and newcomer Kerry Howley. Poems by Sharon Olds, Brenda Shaughnessy, Constantine P. Cavafy, Paul Muldoon, Jeff Dolven, Meghan O’Rourke, and Forrest Gander.

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Poem: Episode

August 25, 2011 | by

Jennifer Michael Hecht.

It’s Thursday, as good a day as any for an incisive and surprising poem by Jennifer Michael Hecht about a hangover. We liked it because of the way it evokes the light mantle of head-clouded shame that follows too much bourbon or rum; its wrapping, self-analyzing lines convey the cloudiness and the strange clarity that come the day after drinking too much. Who hasn’t vowed that “nothing that ever happened/ will happen again?” —Meghan O’Rourke

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Poem: The Listener

July 12, 2011 | by

John Burnside’s poems evoke the other world—whatever it might be. The poems are at once lyrical and meditative, their seemingly ordinary declarations cross-stitched with spookiness; the result is a kind of vivid, autumnal intensity. We liked this poem for the way it steadily drew us into a world of its own making, the slightly surreal clarity of its stains and stars. —Meghan O’Rourke

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Poem: Tender Range

July 6, 2011 | by

Today’s poem, John Rybicki’s “Tender Range,” is an incantation that seems particularly fitting for a crisp fall day. It’s a series of lyrical fragments arranged as a kind of stay against loss and death. We liked this poem for the way it subtly but persuasively finds a fresh language for the sense of imperilment that lurks around us, as in the eerie lines “I don’t know anything / about blowing a child out/ like a balloon, or what comes after— .” —Meghan O’Rourke

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