If you like NYRBs, other books you might want to check oout
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I have just finished Pictures from an Institution by Randall Jarrell. Written in the 1950s, the book offers a satirical and deliciously wicked chronicle of academic life at a small liberal arts college. If you're one of those who enjoys this particular subgenre, you'll love the book. If you've ever taught at a college or university, you'll know Jarell was writing about your institution. I've got a first edition, but I think the University of Chicago has a reprint out right now.
P.S. Sorry about the typo in the topic line. Ouch! does anyone know of a way to edit topic line typos?
About the topic line I think you are stuck, but I have put typos in topic lines as well so you have company.
And since that was such a good recommendation, I'm going to throw out a book that I'm a complete evangelist for, not published by NYRB, but one of the best books I've read in the last several years: Nada by Carmen Laforet. A modern Gothic coming-of-age story set in post–Civil War Spain. I couldn't put it down.
Written in the tenth century, The Kagero Nikki, translated as The Gossamer Years, belongs to the same period as The Tale of Genji and The Pillow Book of Sei Shonagon. Like The Pillow Book of Sei Shonagon, The Gossamer Years is a journal kept by a noblewoman. This frank autobiographical diary reveals two tempestuous decades of the author's unhappy marriage and her growing indignation at rival wives and mistresses. Too impetuous to be satisfied as a subsidiary wife, she protests the marriage system of her time in one of Japanese literature's earliest attempts to portray difficult elements of the predominant social hierarchy. Very little is known of the author outside of what is related in her diary. Her name is unknown -- but she was related to the Lady Murasaki, author of The Tale of Genji, and to Sei Shonagon, author of The Pillow Book.
One book that I think should be better known is Garden, Ashes by Danilo Kis. It's a short book, but not a quick read - the writing style demands concentration. I thought that the author's prose was amazing, it reminded me a bit of Proust, especially in the descriptions of the narrator's sleeping/dreaming habits. The main plot follows the narrator's childhood during WWI, as his family struggles to survive amidst poverty and persecution. However the focus is not so much on prejudice and war, but his difficult, obsessive, passionate father, whose simple task of updating the Bus, Ship, Rail and Air Travel guide has instead turned into the creation of an all-encompassing, unpublishable guide to history, life and everything.
A full list can be found here
I stumbled across this series in highschool in the 80's and felt as if I had hit some sort of jackpot, which is exactly how I feel about nyrb.
Also- a great book which I'm surprised isn't put out by nyrb is Selma Lagerlof's The Ring of the Löwenskölds. Lagerlof won the nobel prize, first woman to do so- but you don't exactly hear her name tossed about much these days.
Here's a link to the BBC page: http://bit.ly/3OUi91
They do have some English editions, including all three volumes of Iconostasis of Anonymous Saints by Yannis Ritsos and works by a bunch of Greek writers I've never heard of. Definitely a part of the world I want to read more from.
The covers of a lot of the Modern Greek Writers series reminds me a bit of NYRB covers.
I also read and liked the other book she discusses in there - Virginie Despentes King Kong Theory. However, there was a statement in the book that I disagree with - "We (the unattractive ones) are just never featured in novels written by men, who only create women they want to have sex with." I need to send her a reading list, I suppose.
Try this: http://www.greeceinprint.com/GipProducts.nsf/Home?openform
It is reminding me of Calvino at the moment. It is an early reviewer copy so the touchstone doesn't seem to be working.
>28 rbhardy3rd: Bless you rob . . . how Have I managed to go my entire life without hearing of Hans Fallada. I just purchased Every Man Dies Alone for me sainted Kindle.
"madness, isolation, troubled minds, dark companions, the dead of winter, and brutal Soviet camps"
If you enjoy those kinds of books, I would recommend This Blinding Absence of Light by Tahar Ben Jelloun which is a very beautifully written book about an extremely depressing subject - people stuck for years in an underground prison.
That must be why I like NYRB books so much!
But to be fair, I've read some very funny ones and pleasant ones too, including The Dud Avocado, Lolly Willowes, Enchanted April, What's for Dinner?, and the books by Patrick Lee Fermor.
Edited to fix italics.
D. K. Broster biography: http://www.collectingbooksandmagazines.com/broster.html