“Such are the perfections of fiction...Everything it teaches is useless insofar as structuring your life: you can’t prop up anything with fiction. It, in fact, teaches you just that. That in order to attempt to employ its specific wisdom is a sign of madness...There is more profit in an hour’s talk with Billy Graham than in a reading of Joyce. Graham might conceivably make you sick, so that you might move, go somewhere to get well. But Joyce just sends you out into the street, where the world goes on, solid as a bus. If you met Joyce and said 'Help me,' he’d hand you a copy of Finnegans Wake. You could both cry.” – Gilbert Sorrentino, Imaginative Qualities of Actual Things

Tuesday, April 19, 2011

Book Review: The Pale King

The Pale King
By David Foster Wallace

Today on Triple R's Breakfasters I reviewed David Foster Wallace's The Pale King. You can read the opening below, but you'll need to click on the link at the end to read the rest over at the Readings website:

In 2008, David Foster Wallace committed suicide, leaving behind a partially completed novel that has now been published under the title The Pale King. Michael Pietsch, who edited The Pale King, discusses the process of compiling the book in a detailed introduction and establishes from the outset that this is an incomplete work; indeed, the tag-line ‘an unfinished novel’ is given a prominent position on the title page. And the book itself makes good on that promise: the text of The Pale King doesn’t end so much as it simply ceases, followed by a series of Wallace’s notes and errata that suggest how the rest of the book might have turned out . . . (Click here to read the whole review).

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