Essays discuss the ideas, images, and attitudes that are the foundations of the author's fiction, such writers as Willa Cather, Sylvia Plath, Georgette Heyer, and Toni Morrison, and the author's fascination with the symbolic and the real
"What Kafka was to the first half of the twentieth century, Philip K. Dick is to the second half."--Art Spiegelman, author of MAUS
Philip K. Dick was both our most brilliant science fiction writer and a visionary philosopher who chose to couch his speculations in fiction. For, as he wrote about androids and virtual reality, schizophrenic prophets and amnesiac gods, Dick was also posing fundamental questions: What is reality? What is sanity? And what is human? This unprecedented collection of Dick's literary and philosophical writings acquaints us with the astonishing range and eloquence of his lifelong inquiry.
The bestselling author of Vox and The Fermata devotes his hyperdriven curiosity and magnificently baroque prose to the fossils of punctuation and the lexicography of smut, delivering to readers a provocative and often hilarious celebration of the neglected aspects of our experience.
With brilliant wit, idiosyncratic intelligence, and a bold grasp of intricate political realities, the celebrated author of Flaubert's Parrot turns his satiric glance homeward to England, in a sparkling collection of essays that illustrates the infinite variety of contemporary London life.
"The Best of Myles" brings together the best of Flann O'Brien's newspaper column "Cruiskeen Lawn," written over a nearly thirty-year period. Covering such subjects as plumbers, the justice system, and improbable inventions, O'Brien (whose real name was Brian O'Nolan, though his newspaper pseudonym was Myles na Gopaleen) is replete with zany humor and biting satire directed at the Irish and their preoccupations. Most of all, however, "The Best of Myles" displays O'Brien's unique mastery of language and style.
Pieces of the Frame is a gathering of memorable writings by one of the greatest journalists and storytellers of our time. They take the reader from the backwoods roads of Georgia, to the high altitude of Ruidoso Downs in New Mexico; from the social decay of Atlantic City, to Scotland, where a pilgrimage for art's sake leads to a surprising encounter with history on a hilltop with a view of a fifth of the entire country. McPhee's writing is more than informative; these are stories, artful and full of character, that make compelling reading. They play with and against one another, so that Pieces of the Frame is distinguished as much by its unity as by its variety. Subjects familiar to McPhee's readers--sports, Scotland, conservation--are treated here with intimacy and a sense of the writer at work.
" Louise ] Erdrich holds up an articulate strength. Moving, memorable... The Blue Jay's Dance is] a book that breaks ground."--Boston Sunday Globe
Fifteen years after its initial publication, New York Times bestselling author Louise Erdrich's beloved memoir The Blue Jay's Dance is available for a whole new generation of families to discover. The first major work of nonfiction by the author of such classics as Love Medicine and The Plague of Doves, The Blue Jay's Dance is, in the words of the New York Times Book Review, an "observant, tender, and honest" meditation on the experience of motherhood.
The legends of King Arthur and his knights of the Round Table have inspired some of the greatest works of literature--from Cervantes's Don Quixote to Tennyson's Idylls of the King. Although many versions exist, Malory's stands as the classic rendition. Malory wrote the book while in Newgate Prison during the last three years of his life; it was published some fourteen years later, in 1485, by William Caxton. The tales, steeped in the magic of Merlin, the powerful cords of the chivalric code, and the age-old dramas of love and death, resound across the centuries.The stories of King Arthur, Lancelot, Queen Guenever, and Tristram and Isolde seem astonishingly moving and modern. Malory's Le Morte d'Arthur endures and inspires because it embodies mankind's deepest yearnings for brotherhood and community, a love worth dying for, and valor, honor, and chivalry.
Although he is best known for his luminous reports from the farthest-flung corners of the earth, Bruce Chatwin possessed a literary sensibility that reached beyond the travel narrative to span a world of topics--from art and antiques to archaeology and architecture. This spirited collection of previously neglected or unpublished essays, articles, short stories, travel sketches, and criticism represents every aspect and period of Chatwin's career as it reveals an abiding theme in his work: his fascination with, and hunger for, the peripatetic existence. While Chatwin's poignant search for a suitable place to "hang his hat," his compelling arguments for the nomadic "alternative," his revealing fictional accounts of exile and the exotic, and his wickedly en pointe social history of Capri prove him to be an excellent observer of social and cultural mores, Chatwin's own restlessness, his yearning to be on the move, glimmers beneath every surface of this dazzling body of work.