Literary Criticism
The Codex Mojaodicus
The Codex Mojaodicus
Paperback      ISBN: 1944380000

The Codex Mojaodicus collects three novels-in-verse --"My Sweet Conquistador," "Chaley Way," and "The Pocho Codex" -- all of which mine, mime, record and disgorge the impressions and dissertations of language as it is uttered, stuttered, and felt in a variety of tongues and heads. In these theatrical poems, Alvarez documents a multilingual field, tracing a Xicano genome over and above

Hobbit Philosophy
Hobbit Philosophy
Paperback      ISBN: 0470405147
A philosophical exploration of J.R.R. Tolkien's beloved classic--just in time for the December 2012 release of Peter Jackson's new film adaptation, The Hobbit: An Unexpected Journey

J.R.R. Tolkien's The Hobbit is one of the best-loved fantasy books of all time and the enchanting "prequel" to The Lord of the Rings. With the help of some of history's great philosophers, this book ponders a host of deep questions raised in this timeless tale, such as: Are adventures simply "nasty, disturbing, uncomfortable things" that "make you late for dinner," or are they exciting and potentially life-changing events? What duties do friends have to one another? Should mercy be extended even to those who deserve to die?

  • Gives you new insights into The Hobbit's central characters, including Bilbo Baggins, Gandalf, Gollum, and Thorin and their exploits, from the Shire through Mirkwood to the Lonely Mountain
  • Explores key questions about The Hobbit's story and themes, including: Was the Arkenstone really Bilbo's to give? How should Smaug's treasure have been distributed? Did Thorin leave his "beautiful golden harp" at Bag-End when he headed out into the Wild? (If so, how much could we get for that on eBay?)
  • Draws on the insights of some of the world's deepest thinkers, from Confucius, Plato, and Aristotle to Immanuel Kant, William Blake, and contemporary American philosopher Thomas Nagel

From the happy halls of Elrond's Last Homely House to Gollum's "slimy island of rock," this is a must read for longtime Tolkien fans as well as those discovering Bilbo Baggins and his adventures "there and back again" for the first time.

John Knowles' a Separate Peace: Bookmarked
John Knowles' a Separate Peace
Bookmarked
Paperback      ISBN: 1632460106

The Bookmarked series focuses on a famous work of literature that left a powerful impression on an author (hence the name, Bookmarked--a book that left its mark). Each entry in the series will be a no-holds-barred personal narrative detailing how a particular novel influenced an author on their journey to becoming a writer, as well as the myriad directions where that journey has taken them.

In the first book in the series, critically acclaimed author and series editor Kirby Gann takes on John Knowles' classic about the tragic friendship between two boys at a boarding school.

Kirby Gann is the author of the novels Ghosting, Our Napoleon in Rags and The Barbarian Parade. He is the recipient of an Individual Artist Fellowship and two Professional Assistance Awards from the Kentucky Arts Council. Gann is managing editor at Sarabande Books, and teaches in the brief-residency MFA in writing program at Spalding University.

Voices, Places: Essays
Voices, Places
Essays
Paperback      ISBN: 1589881230

"Mason reveals a glorious passion for literature, as well as an almost Whitmanesque openness to the ideas and emotions that inspire creative acts at all levels."--Library Journal (starred review)

"An illuminating literary cartography with many fascinating ports of call."--Kirkus Reviews

"Mason expertly weaves the stories of great writers and places both ancient and new together into an imaginative literary odyssey."--Publishers Weekly

"How are voices like places? They move through us as we move through them."

Celebrated poet David Mason explores surprising connections in geography and time, considering writers who traveled, who emigrated or were exiled, and who often shaped the literature of their homelands. He writes of seasoned travelers (Patrick Leigh Fermor, Bruce Chatwin, Joseph Conrad, Herodotus himself), and writers as far flung as Omar Khayyam, Jamal al-Din al-Afghani, James Joyce, and Les Murray. In the end, he turns to his own native region, the American West, with Wallace Stegner, Edward Abbey, Robinson Jeffers, Belle Turnbull, and Thomas McGrath.

These essays are about familiarity and estrangement, the pleasure and knowledge readers can gain by engaging with writers' lives, their travels, their trials, and the homes they make for themselves.

David Mason is the author of numerous books of poetry, most recently Sea Salt and Davey McGravy; a memoir, News from the Village; and a novel, Ludlow. A former Fulbright fellow to Greece, he lives in Colorado and Oregon and teaches at Colorado College.

Maps Of The Imagination: The Writer As Cartographer
Maps Of The Imagination
The Writer As Cartographer
Hardcover      ISBN: 159534005x

Maps of the Imagination takes us on a magic carpet ride over terrain both familiar and exotic. Using the map as a metaphor, fiction writer Peter Turchi considers writing as a combination of exploration and presentation, all the while serving as an erudite and charming guide. He compares the way a writer leads a reader though the imaginary world of a story, novel, or poem to the way a mapmaker charts the physical world. "To ask for a map," says Turchi, "is to say, 'Tell me a story.' "
With intelligence and wit, the author looks at how mapmakers and writers deal with blank space and the blank page; the conventions they use or consciously disregard; the role of geometry in maps and the parallel role of form in writing; how both maps and writing serve to re-create an individual's view of the world; and the artist's delicate balance of intuition with intention.
A unique combination of history, critical cartography, personal essay, and practical guide to writing, Maps of the Imagination is a book for writers, for readers, and for anyone interested in creativity. Colorful illustrations and Turchi's insightful observations make his book both beautiful and a joy to read.

Critical Terms for Literary Study, Second Edition
Critical Terms for Literary Study, Second Edition
2nd Edition    Paperback      ISBN: 0226472035

Since its publication in 1990, Critical Terms for Literary Study has become a landmark introduction to the work of literary theory--giving tens of thousands of students an unparalleled encounter with what it means to do theory and criticism. Significantly expanded, this new edition features six new chapters that confront, in different ways, the growing understanding of literary works as cultural practices.

These six new chapters are "Popular Culture," "Diversity," "Imperialism/Nationalism," "Desire," "Ethics," and "Class," by John Fiske, Louis Menand, Seamus Deane, Judith Butler, Geoffrey Galt Harpham, and Daniel T. O'Hara, respectively. Each new essay adopts the approach that has won this book such widespread acclaim: each provides a concise history of a literary term, critically explores the issues and questions the term raises, and then puts theory into practice by showing the reading strategies the term permits.

Exploring the concepts that shape the way we read, the essays combine to provide an extraordinary introduction to the work of literature and literary study, as the nation's most distinguished scholars put the tools of critical practice vividly to use.
Ruin the Sacred Truths: Poetry and Belief from the Bible to the Present
Ruin the Sacred Truths
Poetry and Belief from the Bible to the Present
Hardcover      ISBN: 0674780272

Discusses the concept of the sacred and the secular in western literature, and agrues that poetry cannot be judged by socially constructed criteria.

The American Theatre Wing Presents: The Play That Changed My Life: America's Foremost Playwrights on the Plays That Influenced Them
The American Theatre Wing Presents: The Play That Changed My Life
America's Foremost Playwrights on the Plays That Influenced Them
Paperback      ISBN: 1557837406

Nineteen of today's greatest playwrights-including Doug Wright, Edward Albee, Christopher Durang, and Sarah Ruhl-contribute to this book about the transformative power of theatre. What was the play that changed your life? What was the play that inspired you; that showed you something entirely new; that was so thrilling or surprising, breathtaking or poignant, that you were never the same? Nineteen of today's most gifted playwrights respond in this most revealing and personal book. From Edward Albee's 1935 visit to New York's Hippodrome Theatre to see Jimmy Durante (and an elephant) in Rodgers and Hart's Jumbo to Diana Son's twelfth-grade field trip in 1983 to see Diane Venora play Hamlet at the Public Theater, America's foremost playwrights share their stories. Also included here are pieces by Christopher Durang, David Henry Hwang, Sarah Ruhl, A. R. Gurney, John Patrick Shanley, Doug Wright, and more.

Ten Years in the Tub: A Decade Soaking in Great Books
Ten Years in the Tub
A Decade Soaking in Great Books
Paperback      ISBN: 1940450365

"How often do you begin reading a book that makes you--immediately, urgently, desperately--want to read more books?" (Booklist). Nick Hornby has managed to write just such a book in this hilarious, insightful, and infectious volume. Ten Years in the Tub chronicles Hornby's journey through a decade's worth of books, as related in his wildly popular Believer column "Stuff I've Been Reading."

Ten Years in the Tub is a one-way ticket into the mind of one of the most beloved contemporary writers on his favorite pastime, but it's also a meditation on what Celine Dion can teach us about ourselves, a warning about how John Updike can ruin our sex lives, and a recommendation for the way Body Shop Vanilla Shower Gel can add excitement to our days. This "decade-long addiction for many... makes standing in line at the bank a blessed interval for snorting another page." (the New York Times Book Review)
The Triggering Town: Lectures and Essays on Poetry and Writing
The Triggering Town
Lectures and Essays on Poetry and Writing
Paperback      ISBN: 0393309339

The distinguished American poet examines the art and economics of writing, touching on communication, teaching, and inspiration.