I read Anne Garréta’s Sphinx, and there’s a crazy Oulipian experiment going on here. Once you realize the constraint that makes this book strange and different, you can’t help but be impressed that it was 1) written and 2) translated well (shout-out to Deep Vellum). It’s a story of the narrator’s obsession and romance, “caught up in a love that was always uncompleting itself”. I enjoyed it.
I read Carmen Boullosa’s Texas: The Great Theft. It took me a while to catch on, but then I was able to coast along with the dozens and dozens of side characters and tangents. I didn’t love it, but haven’t read anything else where you get about ten thousand vivid snapshots of a time and place. Also, this book was the first release from Deep Vellum, a specialty translated lit operation run my friend Will Evans. So far my subscription is paying off. More to come.
On the other side of the equation, I can’t bear the thought that people think they have to move to New York to work in publishing, especially when the future of this country, and the publishing industry, is going to be found outside of New York.
My buddy @WillEvans is the coolest.