The literary marketplace has not been particularly welcoming to narratives about fictional rock’n’roll stars in the last several decades.
Human desires and intents are more complicated than what can be captured by quantifying costs and benefits. And sometimes our real choices are much simpler than the dozens of counter-factuals an economist might want to run to find the optimal course of action.
Somehow, even with the tousled hair and the cheap cigarettes, Anna Karina always managed to look every bit as dazzling as Audrey Hepburm, if not more so, simply by virtue of the fact that she knew how to match a gun with a pleated skirt, and would probably recite Marx with superb accuracy if you asked nicely and offered her a light.
Stoppard takes whichever elements please him and use them to assemble a fascinating Fabergé egg of a movie, an object to marvel at. Compressions in time express themselves in impossible spaces. Anna Karenina is as tightly wound as an old-fashioned clock, as carefully constructed as a music box.
Dalkey Archive Press, in an act that feels a little like ex post facto justification and a little like misguided reprisal, has suspended the intern program, perhaps permanently, which is really just a lose-lose shame.
The implicit contrast of the acclaimed “Dickensian” shows is that of reality TV, but a reality TV show featuring competitive author performances could flip that construction on its head.
The Portrait of a Lady, The Master, and Damnation, characterized by intimacy and interiority, are savage in their affect and practically ooze feeling. Moreover, they are narrative triumphs which make for a strange trifecta but somehow, a fitting one.
The Shelley I admire is the the other half of the famous couple: the Shelley who built a monster. I look at each consumerist tragedy as if it were a parts list, rather than an approach to sincerity by way of a font of irony.