Showing posts from April 13, 2006

Joint Review #18 and #19: Very Meta

Voyage Along the Horizon by Javier Marias (Believer Books, April 2006) Book by Book: Notes On Reading And Life by Michael Dirda (Henry Holt, May 2006) The last two books I read have a thematic unity: they are both, in different ways, books about reading. Marias' novel is a story-within-a-novel-within-a-novel about a novelist. Dirda's book is literally about what he's read: a commonplace book of quotations mixed with his own summaries of what he's learned from books. (This theme stuff seems to happen surprisingly often with my reading lately – or maybe you can find a link between any two works of art if you look hard enough, and since I've been reviewing them in pairs, I tend to look for the link. Go fig.) The other thing they have in common, unfortunately, is that I wasn't crazy about either one. Possibly my expectations were too high. The beautiful cover of VOYAGE is evocative of kids' adventure stories, sailor's drawings, maybe even Joseph Cornel