20 Books of Summer | 2018

Hello, lovelies, I have recently come back from a bike trip along the Via Julia, a route following the Roman road from Günzburg to Salzburg. The weather was warm, blue-skied and sunny, and Summer was impatiently making its way around us.  In my inner literary calender, this means another thing: it’s time for another 20 Books…

Taking apart mythologies

If we all put our queer shoulders to the wheel “Are you conscious of directing the reader to think in a certain way when you write? It’s very tricky because people are different and people have different responses to fiction. But it’s impossible to direct and I think it wouldn’t be a good thing if…

What’s in a name (and on a bookshelf?) | My blog’s name in books

Hello, folks, I saw this meme doing the rounds at Karen, Lizzy, Simon, Ali & Jane, and decided to join in! The meme was created by  Fictionophile and it is as simple as it gets: spell out your blog’s name from books on your TBR shelf. I’ve perused my shelf of Virago unread books, and here is what I found: THE Treasure…

The tempting fruit that hung above you

Shards I can never remake the thing I have destroyed; I brushed the golden dust from the moth’s bright wing, I called down wind to shatter the cherry-blossoms, I did a terrible thing. I feared that the cup might fall, so I flung it from me; I feared that the bird might fly, so I…

Aline Murray Kilmer

Aline Murray Kilmer (August 1, 1888 – October 1, 1941) was an American poet and essayist. She attended the Rutgers College Grammar School in New Brunswick, New Jersey, and graduated from the Vail-Deane School in Elizabeth, New Jersey. After her husband’s death in World War I, she began publishing her own books. Books Poetry Candles That Burn (1919) Vigils (1921) Shards (poem) To Sappho, About Her Apple (poem)…

Library Loot & Bout of Books

Hey, folks, Whenever I go to the library, I cannot resist coming back home with a stack. Here is my Library Loot: May 9 to 15 Library Loot is a weekly event co-hosted by Claire from The Captive Reader and Linda from Silly Little Mischief, encouraging bloggers to share the books they’ve checked out from the library. I seem to…

That indefinitely extended requirement that one human being makes upon another

Dear Iris, “I think it’s terrible to be in danger of writing a philosophical novel”, you said in an interview. And I know you have systematically refused to be called a philosophical novelist. However, may I politely disagree? Anatole Broyard attributes to you the idea that good art is philosophy swimming, or philosophy drowning. I could not trace…

Iris Murdoch

Iris Murdoch (Jean Iris Murdoch, 15 July 1919 – 8 February 1999) was an  Anglo-Irish novelist and philosopher. Murdoch studied classics at Somerville College, Oxford. She was awarded a first-class honours degree in 1942. She went into the civil service and was assistant principal in the Treasury from 1942 to 1944. From 1944 to 1946, she worked with refugees…

Library Loot, The 1977 Club & Dewey’s Readathon

Hello, folks! Here are my reading plans for the following weeks: Library Loot: April 11 to 18 Library Loot is a weekly event co-hosted by Claire from The Captive Reader and Linda from Silly Little Mischief, encouraging bloggers to share the books they’ve checked out from the library. Here is what I got this week: Blues Legacies and Black…

A clarity which startles

It’s terrible to be in danger of writing a philosophical novel “I suppose since I’m largely influenced and interested in moral philosophy that some of the reflections about moral philosophy and about ethics may be connected with thinking about the dilemmas of my characters but this is very, very indirect. Philosophy is such a different game from writing fiction. I think it’s terrible to be in danger…

Defeating the formlessness

I’m not a philosophical novelist “I’m not a philosophical novelist. People think that because I’m a philosopher there’s a philosophical view being put across, but this is not so. I’ve got a philosophical viewpoint but I certainly don’t want to force it across in the novels, although a certain amount of one’s metaphysic in a…

A small tear in the fabric of reality

Dear Nicole, Most of the time, we tend to think of fiction as a mirror held up, facing reality. Never mind if this is a clear mirror, a cloudy or an openly distorted one – our gaze rarely changes direction. Some books, however, attempt to cross through the looking-glass: they direct our gaze away from…