Monthly Archives: March 2012

His Master’s Voice

John Banville and Colm Tóibín, the two most brilliant contemporary Irish novelists*, make something of an odd couple.  Banville habitually puts us at the mercy of a narrator who might be crotchety and cantankerous (The Sea or might be a … Continue reading

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Puritan Ireland’s Dead and Gone

[I guess this post includes some quasi-spoilers, so if you’re about to read The Whitethorn Woods, be warned.] In an early chapter of Maeve Binchy’s The Whitethorn Woods, a 60-something Dubliner named Vera decides to sign up for what the … Continue reading

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Lying is an art…I do it exceptionally well.

Last weekend I heard this piece on NPR: http://www.npr.org/2012/03/08/148040132/lifespan-what-are-the-limits-of-literary-license John D’Agata wrote an essay about a boy’s suicide, in which many of the facts were made up–in other words, it was a piece of fiction based on a true story. … Continue reading

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Geeky election stuff

Now that it seems the entertaining race for the Republican nomination has reached trash time, where the candidates should be putting in their third-stringers to run out the clock (though Rick Santorum already often seems to be a third-string sub … Continue reading

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