Saturday, October 04, 2014

Elena Ferrante is (current) jam

My piece in the Globe and Mail on mysterious Italian novelist Elena Ferrante.

How about you? What are you up to? How have you been?


Sorry to hear!

Monday, April 28, 2014

More books I read for money: featuring David Letterman, Bruce McCall, Gary Shteyngart, the guy who co-wrote "Babe: Pig in the City," and more!

Omnibus blog posts are the best/only kind of blog posts. And so:

Review of This Land Was Made for You and Me by Bruce McCall and David Letterman.

Review of Little Failure by Gary Shteyngart (to which Mr. Shteyngart replied with some Twitter shouting).

Review of Today I Am A Boy by Kim Fu.

Review of The Full Ridiculous by Mark Lamprell. (Who co-wrote Babe: Pig in the City! Which I love! This book not so much!)


Bonus content: getting drunk on CanLit! Watching UFC with poets!

Monday, December 09, 2013

Books I've Been Paid To Read Lately

Life is still elsewhere, but here are some recent reviews:

Of Chris Hadfield's A Guide to Life on Earth.

Of Bill Bryson's One Summer.

Of Eric Schlosser's terrifying Command and Control.

Of The Panopticon by Jenni Fagan.

Of Scatter, Adapt and Remember by Annalee Newitz.

Of Time Reborn by Lee Smolin.


As Daffy Duck might say if he reviewed books, it's not nearly a living.

Sunday, April 28, 2013

Fetherling's footnotes

The best group of footnotes in George Fetherling's The Writing Life: Journals 1975 - 2005 (on p. 88):

17 Sarah Sheard (b. 1953), novelist, author of Almost Japanese
18 Douglas Gibson (b. 1943), McClelland & Stewart publisher
19 Lee Harvey Oswald (1939 - 1963), alleged assassin of John F. Kennedy

Monday, April 01, 2013

The Fun Parts by Sam Lipsyte

My review of Sam Lipsyte's latest in The Toronto Star:
There is a very good reason to read a book about unlikeable losers. Books like that can be very, very funny. And Lipsyte is a very funny writer. The one thing he is constantly doing — even when he maybe shouldn’t, at least not so much — is being funny.

Sunday, March 10, 2013

You Will Be To Blame

"I was tired from the drive - all the way up to Dalgleish, to get him, and back to Toronto since noon - and worried about getting the rented car back on time, and irritated by an article I had been reading in a magazine in the waiting room. It was about another writer, a woman younger, better-looking, probably more talented than I am. I had been in England for two months and so I had not seen this article before, but it crossed my mind while I was reading that my father would have. I could hear him saying, Well, I didn't see anything about you in Maclean's. And if he had read something about me he would say, Well, I didn't think too much of that write-up. His tone would be humorous and indulgent but would produce in me a familiar dreariness of spirit. The message I got from him was simple: Fame must be striven for, then apologized for. Getting or not getting it, you will be to blame." - from "The Moons of Jupiter"

If I were ever to start a tumblr, it'd be called "Alice Munro Just Killing It."