Tag Archives: Art

Le Morte d’Arthur
Thomas Malory

Le Morte d’Arthur is not actually one long epic about the life and death of King Arthur, but rather a collection of stories of the knights of the Round Table fused by Malory into a somewhat coherent tale…

The Divine Comedy
Dante Alighieri

Given the magnificent structure of the work, and the quality of the poetry in Italian, I have to wonder if it’s worthwhile to read The Divine Comedy in translation…

Journey to the West
Wu Cheng'en

The impact that Journey to the West has had on the world since its publication is…staggering. I don’t think I would be overstating things to say that most (if not all) modern manga/anime have been directly influenced by Journey to the West

The Magic Mountain
Thomas Mann

The Magic Mountain, much like Oblomov, is a dangerous book. What Mann does with this novel of little action that moves at a snail’s place is illustrate just how easily one’s life, one’s youth, one’s livelihood can slowly but surely slip away…

Orlando
Virginia Woolf

Orlando: A Biography (and I’ve left it’s secondary title in there since it was evidently important to the author) is a new style of biography. Woolf takes as her subject the character Orlando, and writes a kind of biography the world had never seen up to that point…

Dictionary of the Khazars
Milorad Pavić

There exists a legendary account about the Khazars conversion to Judaism (actually several legendary accounts) that runs approximately as follows: the ruler of the Khazars, the kaghan, decided that in order to become a modern nation, he and his people needed to adopt one of the major monotheistic religions: Christianity, Judaism or Islam (previously the nation had been pagan). And so he sent for a Christian, Jewish and Islamic scholar, asking them each to plead their case…

Revenge of the Rainbow Dragons
Rose Estes

If you’re like me, you hear the name “Rose Estes” and wonder, “Who?” It amazes me, to be honest, that someone like Estes could have been so thoroughly forgotten by the pages of history while second-rate authors like Michael Crichton, John Grisham, and Ernest Hemingway remain in the public consciousness…

As I Lay Dying
William Faulkner

Faulkner is the kind of writer that was so good at…well, writing, that he has the ability to adopt many personas and writing styles. Usually, he sticks to one for a given story or novel. In As I Lay Dying, he does it all

Frankenstein
Mary Shelley

Frankenstein is a far cry from the Franken Berry we’ve come to know and love, but he still has much to teach us…

Lolita
Vladimir Nabokov

Let’s get the bad stuff out of the way first. Yes, Lolita is a novel about child exploitation. That’s one of the reasons why I vowed I’d never read it, or anything else by Nabokov—and I probably never would have, had it not been assigned by my first English professor in my first English class at Berkeley