FALL PREVIEW—PART II
Here’s the second half of NYRB’s fall list, with books from our Classics, Children’s Collection, Poets, and non-Classics imprints, and our newest series, Calligrams, with writings on and about China.
Midnight in the Century by Victor Serge, translated from the French and with an introduction by Richard Greeman
A searching novel about a group of revolutionaries—true believers in a cause that no longer exists—living in unlikely exile among Russian Orthodox Old Believers, also suffering for their faith. “Like Koestler in ‘Darkness at Noon,’ Serge seems to be saying that man, the particular, is more important than mankind, the abstraction.”—John Leonard, The New York Times
The Door by Magda Szabó, a new translation from the Hungarian by Len Rix
In a prizewinning translation by Len Rix, Magda Szabó’s unsettling and beautiful novel about friendship and tragedy marks Szabó as a major modern European author and formidable writer of female characters. “Clever, moving, frightening, [The Door] deserves to be a bestseller.” —The Telegraph
Thus Were Their Faces: Selected Stories by Silvina Ocampo, introduction by Helen Oyeyemi, a new translation from the Spanish by Daniel Balderston, preface by Jorge Luis Borges
Dark, gothic, fantastic, and grotesque, Ocampo’s stories stand alongside those of her collaborators and countrymen Borges, Cortázar, and Bioy Casares. “Few writers have an eye for the small horrors of everyday life; fewer still see the everyday marvelous. Other than Ocampo, I cannot think of a single writer who … has chronicled both with such wise and elegant humor.” —Alberto Manguel
Zama by Antonio di Benedetto, translated from the Spanish and with an introduction by Esther Allen
First published in 1956, this novel set in colonial Paraguay is now universally recognized as one of the masterpieces of modern Argentinean and Spanish-language literature. “Scattered in various corners of Latin America and Spain, [Zama] had a few, fervent readers, almost all of them friends or unwarranted enemies…. [It is written with] the steady pulse of a neurosurgeon.”—Roberto Bolaño, from his story “Sensini”
Primitive Man As Philosopher by Paul Radin, introduction by Neni Panourgiá
Considered “a minor masterpiece of the Americanist tradition,” Paul Radin’s landmark anthropological study examines thought and religion in an array of aboriginal cultures through first hand accounts and a veritable anthology of poems and songs from the varied traditions. Readers both in and outside of the field will appreciate the rich and varied insights of this classic of anthropology.
Ending Up by Kingsley Amis
“I finished Kingsley Amis’s Ending Up with…a conviction, confirmed in work after work, that he is one of the few living novelists totally incapable of boring me. Ending Up is a sardonic little masterpiece which, with incredible economy and stylistic restraint, shows what old age is really like, and also—far, far better than any other writer I know—what contemporary England is like.” —Anthony Burgess
Take a Girl Like You by Kingsley Amis
Kingsley Amis’s most ambitious reckoning with his central theme—the degradation of modern life—Take a Girl Like You introduces one of the rare unqualified good guys in Amis’s rogue-ridden world: Jenny Bunn, a girl from the North English country has come south to teach school in a small smug town where she hopes to find love and fortune.
Cat Town: Selected Poems by Sakutarō Hagiwara, translated from the Japanese by Hiroaki Sato
“Sakutarō Hagiwara is the ultimate modern Japanese poet. He first perfected the use of the colloquial language as a medium for modern poetic expression. Using that language, he reveals a sensibility that can be tough, neurotic, ironic, touching, and profound, sometimes all in the same poem. Always rhythmic and occasionally obscure, poem after poem can represent a scintillating verbal and spiritual adventure, particularly in the lucid and elegant translations created by Hiroaki Sato.”—J. Thomas Rimer
Silvina Ocampo, selected poems in a new translation from the Spanish by Jason Weiss
Ocampo studied with de Chirico and collaborated with Borges and Bioy Casares. Her poems were celebrated in Argentina but, until now, have been nearly unavailable in English. This selection spans her full career—from early nature sonnets to a late metaphysical turn—and shows her to be adept at “captur[ing] the magic inside everyday rituals” (Italo Calvino).
Lives of the New York Intellectuals: A Group Portrait by Edward Mendelson
One of contemporary America’s leading critics and scholars offers a provocative reassessment of the lives and work of eight influential twentieth-century American writers: Lionel Trilling, Dwight Macdonald, W.H. Auden, William Maxwell, Saul Bellow, Alfred Kazin, Norman Mailer, and Frank O’Hara.
The Three Leaps of Wang Lun: A Chinese Novel by Alfred Döblin, translated from the German by C.D. Godwin
Alfred Döblin’s debut work of fiction, the first in western literature to depict Chinese history in great detail and considered by many the first modern German novel, is a dazzling expressionist epic about imperial court life, outcasts, martial arts, religion, and revolution. “I consider Döblin’s 1915 novel, The Three Leaps of Wang Lun, the best contemporary novel by far. It exhibits an entirely superior, most rare, talent. It is true art.” —Max Horkheimer
Chinese Rhyme-Prose translated from the Chinese by Burton Watson
Burton Watson’s monumental compilation of fu—or, rhyme-prose poetry—is considered one of the most important anthologies of Chinese literature available in English and, until now, has been out of print for decades. The poems, full of abandoned cities, mountainscapes, owls and goddesses, are rendered here in Watson’s masterful English translation for a new generation of readers to enjoy.
The Literary Mind and the Carving of Dragons by Liu Hsieh, translated from the Chinese and annotated by Vincent Yu-chung Shih
The first comprehensive work of literary criticism in Chinese, The Literary Mind and the Carving of Dragons was written some 1,500 years ago by critic Liu Hsieh whose encyclopedic knowledge of Chinese literature is organized here according to the I Ching. A dazzling, elegant compendium of literary concepts both alien and familiar, Hsieh’s book is indispensable for anyone interested in Chinese literature or in the art of writing itself.
The Complete Bostock and Harris by Leon Garfield
The Complete Bostock and Harris combines two delightful, suspenseful, and madly funny tales of Harris and the not-so-bright Bostock, a rollicking best-friend duo who’ve been through thick and thin together in eighteenth-century Brighton. “A delicious literary concoction bubbling along with the author’s perfect sense of dramatic timing and with his mixture of earthy humor and effervescent wit.”—The Horn Book Magazine