Monday, May 03, 2004

Two intensely enjoyable books are keeping me company at The Bookery this evening. The very humorous sadness of Nabokov's Pnin has long been noted; in addition to the rapturous prose and wry nostalgia for a Russia that probably never existed, I'm tickled by the references to Ithaca and Cornell. And please, please go buy and read Renee Gladman's The Activist. A marvelous model of the poem-novel, a lushly abstract deconstruction of politics both vertical and horizontal, and bitingly funny to boot. To maladapt one of her own sentences, "[Her] repudiation was unbearable, in that it was the most high-spirited display of disaffection that I'd ever seen."

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