January 06, 2009

"Two Serious Ladies" - Jane Bowles

I read this marvellous little book in a rush after finishing "2666". The impetus was an old interview with Harry Mathews I came across about his (at the time) new book, "Cigarettes" (incidentally the first book I read to use Oulipian techniques of creative contstraint). Sadly, having read it I still can't think of a better way to summarise it than using Mathews' words from that interview: "She achieves miracles by just putting one ordinary sentence after the other and she never indicates the way you’re supposed to feel about it." A good example of what he means is offered by the introduction to the edition I read, which was from Virago. It made a very strong case for the book as a feminist classic, whereas to me it seemed to be a book about rich eccentrics. Anyway, it's very funny. I think. Though it may not be to you. Either way, highly recommended...

(Please note, also, that I've finally sussed out using Blogger's labels, which means if you click on the categories listed at the bottom of each post, you can read all related posts. Hurrah! Haven't yet managed to go back and add them to the whole archive of nonsense what I wrote, but I will, I will...)

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