Archive for October 4th, 2010

October 4, 2010

The Ask: Sam Lipsyte

by Stuart

This is hands-down my favourite novel of 2010. It’s narrated by Milo Burke; failed painter, struggling toddler-dad and troubled employee in the fundraising department of a New York University. The Ask is a proper Great American Novel, about all the stuff that really matters now, and it made me laugh out loud more times than any novel I think I’ve ever read.

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October 4, 2010

Nazi Literature in the Americas: Roberto Bolaño (£7.99)

by Stuart

This is the brilliant second novel from the dead Chilean genius who went on to write the celebrated and bogglingly long 2666. It’s a weird Borgesian compendium of short biographical sketches of made-up Nazi-sympathising writers, and it is way, way funnier than it sounds.

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October 4, 2010

What The Hell Are You Doing? The Essential David Shrigley (£20.00)

by Stuart

This glorious big yellow hardback is a sort of greatest hits collection of the brilliantly cack-handed drawings and writings of our Funniest Living Artist. It would make a nice Christmas present for anyone you know with working eyes.

October 4, 2010

The Suicide Shop: Jean Teule

by Andy

If Tim Burton (pre Helena Bonham Carter) was to write a Philip K Dick novel (early Philip K Dick, without the drugs, lashings of futility, and with narratives that started and ended and went somewhere in between), and set it in France, you would probably end up with something like this.

And very good it is too.

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October 4, 2010

AD 500: Simon Young

by Andy

Bestiality.  Mad monks.  Human sacrifice.  Britain was far more interesting back then, if a tad intolerant and gruesome.  Written in the form of a travelogue for visiting Byzantines, it is a fabulously engaging snapshot of a chaotic and emerging Britain

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October 4, 2010

The Celtic Revolution: Simon Young

by Andy

The Celts, it would seem, did an awful lot; don’t let the apparent brevity of the book deceive you.  Young certainly knows his stuff and yet is one of the rare few able to effortlessly distil his arguments into something that is: –

(a)     readable

(b)    comprehensible

which always helps.

Perhaps not the most obvious topic but this is a lively and illuminating insight into an all too often unacknowledged period.

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