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The Outermost Dream: Literary Sketches di…
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The Outermost Dream: Literary Sketches (edizione 1997)

di William Maxwell (Autore)

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The Outermost Dream brings together essays and reviews by William Maxwell, one of America's foremost writers and editors. Maxwell chose deliberately to focus on biography, memoir, diaries, and correspondence when reviewing books: "what people said and did and wore and ate and hoped for and were afraid of, and in detail after often unimaginable detail they refresh our idea of existence and hold oblivion at arm's length." In reading his reviews, we are struck by Maxwell's skill in choosing the one particular, the haunting moment, that further illuminates our understanding of the power of an individual life. His discernment is equally telling whether writing about literary luminaries such as Virginia Woolf, Lord Byron, E.B. White, Isak Dinesen, or delving into the diaries of an unknown Victorian curate with vivid dreams of murder and mayhem.… (altro)
Utente:maxhawkins2
Titolo:The Outermost Dream: Literary Sketches
Autori:William Maxwell (Autore)
Info:Graywolf Press (1997), Edition: 1st Printing, 264 pages
Collezioni:La tua biblioteca
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Etichette:a9, First Edition

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The Outermost Dream: Literary Sketches di William Maxwell

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Excerpts from my original GR review (Mar 2013):
- This collection of pieces by Mr Maxwell, renowned writer and long-lived fiction editor at The New Yorker, came out in 1989. The subtitle, "Literary Sketches", is from a common edition. My copy is captioned, "Essays and Reviews", and sports a black and white photo of a very senior, but smiling and dapper, author. I think the title subheading hits the mark. These are certainly reviews and critical writings about specific books, yet they are made more appealing by Maxwell's learned historical perspectives. So, essay, review, reverie, hybrid form? I enjoyed the whole.
- The nineteen entries here were originally published through several decades, variously in The New Yorker, The New Republic, and the Times Literary Supplement. They run a colorful gamut, from an essay on the publication of the 19th century diaries of an apprentice pastor in England, to a warm profile of E.B. and Katherine White, each of whom were subjects of biographies in the 1980s which he considered. What attracted me and moved me forward here were the lives - adventurous, tragic, inspiring, sometimes enigmatic; lives that in most cases I knew little of. Several of them - writers, diarists, dissidents - I hope to read more about. These would include Karen Blixen, aka Isak Dinesen, whose life I now see was edgier than even "Out of Africa" would evince; also, Andrei Amalrik, Russian writer (this one not so well known) caught in a 60s and 70s Soviet dystopia that remains hard to put one's mind around. ( )
  ThoughtPolice | Nov 6, 2018 |
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The Outermost Dream brings together essays and reviews by William Maxwell, one of America's foremost writers and editors. Maxwell chose deliberately to focus on biography, memoir, diaries, and correspondence when reviewing books: "what people said and did and wore and ate and hoped for and were afraid of, and in detail after often unimaginable detail they refresh our idea of existence and hold oblivion at arm's length." In reading his reviews, we are struck by Maxwell's skill in choosing the one particular, the haunting moment, that further illuminates our understanding of the power of an individual life. His discernment is equally telling whether writing about literary luminaries such as Virginia Woolf, Lord Byron, E.B. White, Isak Dinesen, or delving into the diaries of an unknown Victorian curate with vivid dreams of murder and mayhem.

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