Wintersalen Sale
 
 

Special Offers see all

Enter to WIN a $100 Credit

Subscribe to PowellsBooks.news
for a chance to win.
Privacy Policy

Tour our stores

PowellsBooks.Blog

Authors, readers, critics, media — and booksellers.

 

Author Archive: "John Freeman"

NBCC’s Most Recommended: Winter List, Part 3

[Editor's note: John Freeman is president of the National Book Critics Circle. Last fall the NBCC introduced its Most Recommended List. On the heels of their Winter Reading List, we're pleased to offer the following author comments on titles for the list. And on Monday, February 11th, don't miss our NBCC Best Recommended Books event at Powell's City of Books on Burnside.]

Junot Diaz, author of The Brief Wondrous Life of Oscar Wao and Drown, recommends:

Hari Kunzru's My Revolutions is the book I'm telling people to grab. Kunzru is burning up in this novel. He spins a superb tale and his narrator's plummet down the radical rabbit-hole had me from page one.

(Read Dave's interview with Junot Diaz here.)

÷ ÷ ÷

Troy Jollimore, author of Tom Thomson in Purgatory, recommends:

What I love about bpNichol is his playfulness, his humor, the sheer joy he took in sentences, in words, even in individual letters. Language was never abstract for Nichol, but a vivid, physical presence; the very shape of a letter could inspire him, as could the sound of spoken ...


NBCC’s Most Recommended: Winter List, Part 2

[Editor's note: John Freeman is president of the National Book Critics Circle. Last fall the NBCC introduced its Most Recommended List. On the heels of their Winter Reading List, we're pleased to offer the following author comments on titles for the list. And on Monday, February 11th, don't miss our NBCC Best Recommended Books event at Powell's City of Books on Burnside.]

Diane Ackerman, author of The Zookeeper's Wife and A Natural History of the Senses, recommends:

The Shadow Factory
by Paul West, Lumen Books, Santa Fe, 2008

Prose maestro, Paul West, the author of twenty-two books of fiction and seventeen of nonfiction, sad to say, was struck down by a stroke in June 2004, and is still receiving treatment for Broca's Aphasia. He cannot do mathematics or clocks, and he has only three hours of fluency a day, after which language escapes him.

Fortunately, by some miracle, and through superhuman tenacity, he has written a book about his experiences, including the humor, tragedy, and successes of regaining speech. The language is golden, as of old ; the humor is infectious and ribald; and the prose style on show is very much his own. In short, this work from a writer who refused what fate handed out to him, is a unique document and extraordinary. Nothing like it exists in the annals of medicine or literature. It's a fascinating, account, both heartbreaking and uplifting, a powerfully moving book.

(Read our interview with Diane Ackerman here.)

÷ ÷ ÷

Abby Frucht, author of Life Before Death and Are You Mine?:

Swimming in A Sea of Death
by David Rieff

Light Fell
by Evan Fallenberg

David Rieff's unfortunately titled Swimming in A Sea of Death is inappropriately called a memoir; it's actually a strangely disturbing essay about medicine , guilt, and the balance between body and mind in the context of mortality.


NBCC’s Most Recommended: Winter List, Part 1

[Editor's note: John Freeman is president of the National Book Critics Circle. Last fall the NBCC introduced its Most Recommended List. On the heels of their Winter Reading List, we're pleased to offer the following author comments on titles for the list. And on Monday, February 11th, don't miss our NBCC Best Recommended Books event at Powell's City of Books on Burnside.]

Susan Faludi, author of The Terror Dream recommends:

Pushed
by Jennifer Block

In and age when lazy posturing on social issues so often substitutes for careful reporting, Jennifer Block's Pushed is a welcome affirmation of the virtues of clear thinking and thorough research .

÷ ÷ ÷

Ross King, author of Michelangelo and the Pope's Ceiling, Machiavelli: Philosopher of Power, and The Judgment of Paris recommends:

Day
by AL Kennedy

Day tells, in beautiful prose, the post-war experiences and reminiscences of the tail-gunner in a Lancaster bomber in World War II. A wonderful story in its own right, it's also a timely study of the effects of war on those who fight.

÷ ÷ ÷

Roxana Robinson, author of A Perfect Stranger and Other Stories and Georgia O'Keefe: A Life recommends:

The Rowing Lesson by Anne Landsman, is a strange, beautiful novel, written in a profound and mysterious voice that seems to come from somewhere deep inside the narrator. Calm, authoritative and elegant, it's an exquisite and troubling examination of one of the great passages — the death of a parent.

Learning to Drive, essays by Katha Pollitt, is hilariously funny, self-deprecating, wildly intelligent and vertiginously wide ranging. Completely unpredictable, unsentimental and unabashed, Pollitt's curiosity about life as she knows it makes the rest of us much more informed than we could have expected on all sorts of unexpected subjects. I depend on Pollitt to tell me new things with vitality and grace.


NBCC’s Most Recommended

[Editor's note: John Freeman is president of the National Book Critics Circle. Look for more about the "Most Recommended" list on this blog in the days ahead, including comments from NBCC voters about the titles they chose.]

What if a bestseller list was made up of books people read, rather than what they bought? And what if the recommenders of this book weren't cash registers, but award winning poets, novelists, biographers and critics?

These are the utopian ideas which prompted the National Book Critics Circle to create a monthly Best Recommended List. Polling our 800 members, and the former finalists and winners of our book prizew, we asked: what have you read of 2007 books that you loved? We got quite a few responses.

Nearly 500 voters responded, everyone from John Updike to Robert Hass, Carolyn Forche, Anne Tyler and Cynthia Ozick, too. Starting in 2008, we plan to do this every month. For now, here are the lists they came up with, in order of votes received:


Fiction

1) Junot Diaz, The Brief Wondrous Life of Oscar Wao

2) Denis Johnson, Tree of Smoke

3) Michael Chabon, Continue »


spacer
spacer
  • back to top

FOLLOW US ON...

     
Powell's City of Books is an independent bookstore in Portland, Oregon, that fills a whole city block with more than a million new, used, and out of print books. Shop those shelves — plus literally millions more books, DVDs, and gifts — here at Powells.com.