Monthly Archive: April 2005

Apr 22 2005

Catching up with Greatness

Not mine, of course, the 50 novels from the Sueddeutsche Zeitung‘s list. Since several of my recent book reviews have been negative or lukewarm, I’ll say here above the fold that the latest batch has indeed brought me in touch with literary greatness. In the order I have read them, not of publication or anything …

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Permanent link to this article: http://www.thefrumiousconsortium.net/2005/04/22/catching-up-with-greatness/

Apr 18 2005

Very Old Europe

New work by Sophocles? Hesiod? Lucian? Euripides? A precursor to the Illiad? All coming up, thanks to satellitte imaging technology and a century-old trove of manuscripts brought to Britain from Egypt. In the past four days alone, Oxford’s classicists have used it to make a series of astonishing discoveries, including writing by Sophocles, Euripides, Hesiod …

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Permanent link to this article: http://www.thefrumiousconsortium.net/2005/04/18/very-old-europe/

Apr 11 2005

Slowsilver

Because I mentioned Neal Stephenson’s Quicksilver a couple of times earlier this year, I will now add that I’ve finished reading it. The pace picks up a bit around page 800. To be slightly less unfair, I should say that a number of people have told me that the second and third books are better. …

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Permanent link to this article: http://www.thefrumiousconsortium.net/2005/04/11/slowsilver/

Apr 08 2005

As Trains Go By

The New Republic has published a long review of three novels by Georges Simenon. The thesis is that they are “are superb and polished works of art masquerading as pulp fiction.” Simenon wrote more than 400 novels, under his own name and various pseudonyms. One of them, The Man Who Watched Trains Go By, was …

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Permanent link to this article: http://www.thefrumiousconsortium.net/2005/04/08/as-trains-go-by/

Apr 05 2005

A Little Less Magical

I’m not sure what possessed the editors of the Sueddeutsche Zeitung to add Somerset Maugham’s The Magician to their list of 50 great novels of the twentieth century. In the preface to the edition that I have, the author admits that when it was republished, he had not read the book in nearly fifty years. …

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Permanent link to this article: http://www.thefrumiousconsortium.net/2005/04/05/a-little-less-magical/