Ex Libris Kirkland

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Translator William Weaver
First Written 1979
Genre Fiction
Origin Italy
Publisher Mariner Books
ISBN-10 0156439611
ISBN-13 978-0156439619
My Copy library paperback
First Read October 07, 2011

If On a Winter's Night a Traveler

OK, while IOAWNAT is obviously great, obviously a masterpiece - that doesn't change how damned frustrating it is to read. I was charmed by Calvino's dexterity in flipping between various storylines, and the clever ways he bent the narrative back on itself (and back on myself), but all that reflexivity took patience.

It's a fun read - not like Harry Potter fun - but more like Tristram Shandy fun -but without the dirty jokes. It's a dry, intellectual pleasure.

Noted on October 7, 2011

You fasten your seatbelt. The plane is landing. To fly is the opposite of traveling; you cross a gap in space, you vanish into the void, you accept not being in any place for a duration that is itself a kind of void in time; then you reappear, in a place and in a moment with no relation to the where and when in which you vanished. Meanwhile, what do you do? How do you occupy this absence of yourself from the world and of the world from you? You read; you do not raise your eyes from the book between one airport and the other, because beyond the page there is the void, the anonymity of stopovers, of the metallic uterus that contains you and nourishes you, of the passing crowd always different and always the same.

Quoted on October 7, 2011

I've become so accustomed to not reading that I don't even read what appears before my eyes. It's not easy: they teach us to read as children, and for the rest of our lives we remain the slaves of all the written stuff they fling in front of us. . . . The secret is not refusing to look at the written words. On the contrary, you must look at them, intensely, until they disappear.

Quoted on October 7, 2011

Ex Libris Kirkland is a super-self-absorbed reading journal made by Matt Kirkland. Copyright © 2001 - .
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