This epic, enthralling debut novel—in the vein of Nicole Krauss’ The History of Love—follows a postwar love triangle between an American rabbi, his wife, and a German-Jewish refugee. Spanning seventy years and several continents—from a refugee’s shattered dreams in 1938 Berlin, to a discontented American couple in the 1950s, to a young woman’s life in modern-day Jerusalem—this epic, enthralling novel tells the braided love story of three unforgettable characters. In 1946, Walter Westhaus, a German Jew who spent the war years at Tagore’s ashram in India, arrives at the Jewish Theological Seminary in New York City, where he meets Sol Kerem, a promising rabbinical student. A brilliant nonbeliever, Walter is the perfect foil for Sol’s spiritual questions—and their extraordinary connection is too wonderful not to share with Sol’s free-spirited fiancée Rosalie. Soon Walter and Rosalie are exchanging notes, sketches, and secrets, and begin a transcendent love affair in his attic room, a temple of dusty tomes and whispered poetry. Months later they shatter their impossible bond, retreating to opposite sides of the country—Walter to pursue an academic career in Berkeley and Rosalie and Sol to lead a congregation in suburban New York. A chance meeting years later reconnects Walter, Sol, and Rosalie—catching three hearts and minds in a complex web of desire, heartbreak, and redemption. With extraordinary empathy and virtuosic skill, The Beautiful Possible considers the hidden boundaries of marriage and faith, and the mysterious ways we negotiate our desires.
Empire, Religion, and the Dream Life of Heroes in Persiles
Author: Michael Armstrong-Roche
Publisher: University of Toronto Press
Category: Literary Criticism
Miguel de Cervantes conceived his final work, The Labours of Persiles and Sigismunda: A Northern Story (1617), as a great prose epic that would accomplish for its age what Homer and Virgil had done for theirs. And yet, by the eighteenth century Don Quixote had eclipsed Persiles in the favour of readers and writers alike and the later novel is now virtually forgotten except by specialists. This study sets out to help restore Persiles to pride of place within Cervantes's corpus by reading it as the author's summa, as a boldly new kind of prose epic that casts an original light on the major political, religious, social, and literary debates of its era. At the same time it seeks to illuminate how such a lofty and solemn ambition could coexist with Cervantes evident urge to delight. Grounded in the novel's multiple contexts - literature, history and politics, philosophy and theology - and in close reading of the text, Michael Armstrong-Roche aims to reshape our understanding of Persiles within the history of prose fiction and to take part in the ongoing conversation about the relationship between literary and non-literary cultural forms. Ultimately he reveals how Cervantes recast the prose epic, expanding it in new directions to accommodate the great epic themes - politics, love, and religion - to the most urgent concerns of his day.
In The Beautiful, Novel, and Strange Ronald Paulson fills a lacuna in studies of aesthetics at its point of origin in England in the 1700s. He shows how aesthetics took off not only from British empiricism but also from such forms of religious heterodoxy as deism. The third earl of Shaftesbury, the founder of aesthetics, replaced the Christian God of rewards and punishments with beauty -- worship of God, with a taste for a work of art. William Hogarth, reacting against Shaftesbury's "disinterestedness," replaced his Platonic abstractions with an aesthetics centered on the human body, gendered female, and based on an epistemology of curiosity, pursuit, and seduction. Paulson shows hogarth creating, first in practice and then in theory, a middle area between the Beautiful and the Sublime by adapting Joseph Addison's category (in the Spectator) of the Novel, Uncommon, and Strange. Paulson retrieves an aesthetics that had strong support during the eighteenth century but has been obscured both by the more dominant academic discourse of Shaftesbury (and later Sir Joshua Reynolds) and by current trends in art and literary history. Arguing that the two traditions comprised not only painterly but also literary theory and practice, Paulson explores the innovations of Henry Fielding, John Cleland, Laurence Sterne, and Oliver Goldsmith, which followed and complemented the practice in the visual arts of Hogarth and his followers. "This is an important book. The Beautiful, Novel, and Strange combines the pleasures of concretely detailed scholarship and intellectual polemic. Paulson has an encyclopedic knowledge not only of eighteenth-century literary and visual cultural forms, but also of their most salient instances. One of the most important achievements of his newest book is that it brings together two realms of critical discourse that are usually kept apart: the historiography of aesthetic theory and the criticism of the novel." -- Michael McKeon, Rutgers University
I love to read books. I love to write books. So I decided to write a book about reading books, says David G. Hallman about this collection of short stories, each of which revolves around the characters interaction with a piece of literature. Combining fiction, creative non-fiction, and semifictionalized autobiography, Hallman has crafted tales that draw readers into his characters complex lives using the lens of books such as Paul Bowless The Sheltering Sky, John Le Carrs The Constant Gardener, E. M. Forsters Maurice, Patricia Nell Warrens The Front Runner, Robertson Daviess Fifth Business, and Hallmans own memoir August Farewell. Some of the stories focus specifically on the literary work. In others, the role of the book in the plot is quite subtle. The stories are emotionally engaging and intellectually stimulating with some being sexually explicit. Each one is a dramatic exploration of the joys and heartaches, the thrills and conflicts inherent in personal and social relationships. The connecting theme of the role of books illuminates linkages between art and life. The short stories in Book Tales with their gay plots and themes depict the characters finding insight, courage, and inspiration through a variety of literary works.
This book is part of the TREDITION CLASSICS series. The creators of this series are united by passion for literature and driven by the intention of making all public domain books available in printed format again - worldwide. At tredition we believe that a great book never goes out of style. Several mostly non-profit literature projects provide content to tredition. To support their good work, tredition donates a portion of the proceeds from each sold copy. As a reader of a TREDITION CLASSICS book, you support our mission to save many of the amazing works of world literature from oblivion.
Elizabeth Singer Rowe and the Development of the English Novel is the first in-depth study of Rowe’s prose fiction. A four-volume collection of her work was a bestseller for a hundred years after its publication, but today Rowe is a largely unrecognized figure in the history of the novel. Although her poetry was appreciated by poets such as Alexander Pope for its metrical craftsmanship, beauty, and imagery, by the time of her death in 1737 she was better known for her fiction. According to Paula R. Backscheider, Rowe's major focus in her novels was on creating characters who were seeking a harmonious, contented life, often in the face of considerable social pressure. This quest would become the plotline in a large number of works in the second half of the eighteenth century, and it continues to be a major theme today in novels by women. Backscheider relates Rowe’s work to popular fiction written by earlier writers as well as by her contemporaries. Rowe had a lasting influence on major movements, including the politeness (or gentility) movement, the reading revolution, and the Bluestocking society. The author reveals new information about each of these movements, and Elizabeth Singer Rowe emerges as an important innovator. Her influence resulted in new types of novel writing, philosophies, and lifestyles for women. Backscheider looks to archival materials, literary analysis, biographical evidence, and a configuration of cultural and feminist theories to prove her groundbreaking argument.
Scheherazade Or the Future of the English Novel John Carruthers Originally published in 1928 "A brilliant essay..." Daily Herald A survey of contemporary fiction in England and America lends to the conclusion that the literary and scientific influences of the last fifty years have combined to make the novel of today predominantly analytic. The author argues that it has therefore gained in psychological subtlety, but lost its form and how this may be regained is put forward in the conclusion. 90pp Thamyris Or Is There a Future for Poetry? R C Trevelyan Originally published in 1925 "Learned, sensible and very well-written." New Statesman This volume examines the possibilities of development for modern poetry. 90pp Saxo Grammaticus First Aid for the Best-Seller Ernest Weekley Originally published in 1930 "A very shocking collection of vile phrases from contemporary writers." Daily News Authored by the philologist Ernest Weekley, this volume represents the original emergency grammar manual for time-pressed best-selling writers. 88pp Deucalion Or the Future of Literary Criticism Geoffrey West Originally published in 1930 This book discusses the true function of criticism and asks how modern criticism is performing it. 86pp
Sometimes everything you ever learned about yourself is wrong Fashion is a fickle industry, a frightening fact for twenty-four year old model Ivy Clark. Ten years in and she’s learned a sacred truth—appearance is everything. Nobody cares about her broken past as long as she looks beautiful for the camera. This is the only life Ivy knows—so when it starts to unravel, she’ll do anything to hold on. Even if that means moving to the quaint island town of Greenbrier, South Carolina, to be the new face of her stepmother’s bridal wear line—an irony too rich for words, since Ivy is far from the pure bride in white. If only her tenuous future didn’t rest in the hands of Davis Knight, her mysterious new photographer. Not only did he walk away from the kind of success Ivy longs for to work maintenance at a local church, he treats her differently than any man ever has. Somehow, Davis sees through the façade she works so hard to maintain. He, along with a cast of other characters, challenges everything Ivy has come to believe about beauty and worth. Is it possible that God sees her—a woman stained and broken by the world—yet wants her still?
The 700-year history of the novel in English defies straightforward telling. Encompassing a range of genres, it is geographically and culturally boundless and influenced by great novelists working in other languages. Michael Schmidt, choosing as his travel companions not critics or theorists but other novelists, does full justice to its complexity.
Nineteen-year-old Nayeli works at a taco shop in her Mexican village and dreams about her father, who journeyed to the US to find work. Recently, it has dawned on her that he isn't the only man who has left town. In fact, there are almost no men in the village--they've all gone north. While watching The Magnificent Seven, Nayeli decides to go north herself and recruit seven men--her own "Siete Magníficos"--to repopulate her hometown and protect it from the bandidos who plan on taking it over. Filled with unforgettable characters and prose as radiant as the Sinaloan sun, INTO THE BEAUTIFUL NORTH is the story of an irresistible young woman's quest to find herself on both sides of the fence.