Tomorrow marks the release of an exciting new addition to the modern fabulist genre — Texas-based author Manuel Gonzales’s debut collection, The Miniature Wife. We’re always excited about anything cross-genre, in part because it feels essential, somehow more real than sticking to a single effect, and we’re particular fans of the realist/fantasist dichotomy in fiction. After all, that’s sort of the way we experience the world — half magic, half trying to find socks that match. After the jump, we’ve collected 10 works of modern literary fantasy that will have you seeing those socks in a whole new light — or maybe just seeing the ghost rabbit next to them. … Read More
Shane Jones knows a little bit about surrealism. In his first novel, Light Boxes, the inhabitants of a tiny town fought against perpetual February — and in his wonderful and hallucinatory new novel, Daniel Fights a Hurricane, the weather has only gotten meaner — and the people stranger. Because we’re so consistently bewitched by his work, we asked Jones to curate a list of essential surrealist reads for us, so we can pass the time between his novels a little more easily. He writes: ”My motivation here isn’t to offer a pretentious list of obscure artsy books – I could very easily do that – but to provide suggestions for books that can be easily found, tastefully devoured, and will supply a healthy shot of the weird stuff. Nothing too weird, but also nothing too easy – no mentions of Salvador Dalí or my mother’s 1960s era fairy tale pictures that hang in the living room. Here are the essential surrealist works for everyone – some old, some new, all must-reads.” We wholeheartedly concur. … Read More
This week, Threaded reminded us of one of our favorite moments in Joan Didion’s The White Album — when she lists her packing list, incredibly simple and yet so revealing. Lists, of course, are no rare thing in literature, and have many uses, from adding quirk to showing off knowledge, and have storied positions in classic texts like The Faerie Queene (so many different kinds of trees) and The Illiad (200+ lines of Greek chieftains). Inspired by Didion, we spent some time thinking about our favorite lists in literature, from short to impossibly long, from lists that catalogue items to those that follow the train of imagination. Click through to check out the literary lists we think are the funniest, most revealing, most interesting or flat out strangest, and if we’ve missed your own favorite, tell us about it in the comments. And yes, it does not escape us that this is a list of lists. Meta is the way we like it.
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