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Title:How Fiction Works
Format Type:Ebook
Author:James Wood
Publisher:Farrar, Straus and Giroux
ISBN:0374173400
ISBN 13:
Number of Pages:265
Category:Non fiction, Writing, Literary criticism, Books about books, Essays

How Fiction Works by James Wood

PDF, EPUB, MOBI, TXT, DOC How Fiction Works What makes a story a story What is style What s the connection between realism and real life These are some of the questions James Wood answers in i How Fiction Works i the first book length essay by the preeminent critic of his generation Ranging widely from Homer to David Foster Wallace from i What Maisie Knew i to i Make Way for Ducklings i Wood takes the reader through the basic elements of the art step by step .

The result is nothing less than a philosophy of the novel plainspoken funny blunt in the traditions of E M Forster s i Aspects of the Novel i and Strunk and White s i The Elements of Style i It sums up two decades of insight with wit and concision It will change the way you read

How Fiction Works

What makes a story a story What is style What s the connection between realism and real life These are some of the questions James Wood answers in i How Fiction Works i the first book length essay by the preeminent critic of his generation Ranging widely from Homer to David Foster Wallace from i What Maisie Knew i to i Make Way for Ducklings i Wood takes the reader through the basic elements of the art step by step br br The result is nothing less than a philosophy of the novel plainspoken funny blunt in the traditions of E M Forster s i Aspects of the Novel i and Strunk and White s i The Elements of Style i It sums up two decades of insight with wit and concision It will change the way you read


The Fun Stuff: And Other Essays

Following i The Broken Estate i i The Irresponsible Self i and i How Fiction Works i books that established James Wood as the leading critic of his generation i The Fun Stuff c i onfirms Wood s preeminence not only as a discerning judge but also as an appreciator of the contemporary novel In twenty three passionate sparkling dispatches that range over such crucial writers as Thomas Hardy Leon Tolstoy Edmund Wilson and Mikhail Lermontov Wood offers a panoramic look at the modern novel He effortlessly connects his encyclopedic passionate understanding of the literary canon with an equally in depth analysis of the most important authors writing today including Cormac McCarthy Lydia Davis Aleksandar Hemon and Michel Houellebecq Included in i The Fun Stuff i are the title essay on Keith Moon and the lost joys of drumming which was a finalist for last year s National Magazine Awards as well as Wood s essay on George Orwell which Christopher Hitchens selected for the i Best American Essays i i The Fun Stuff i is indispensable reading for anyone who cares about contemporary literature


The Broken Estate: Essays on Literature and Belief

This book recalls an era when criticism could change the way we look at the world In the tradition of Matthew Arnold and Edmund Wilson James Wood reads literature expansively always pursuing its role and destiny in our lives In a series of essays about such figures as Melville Flaubert Chekhov Virginia Woolf and Don DeLillo Wood relates their fiction to questions of religious and philosophical belief He suggests that the steady ebb of the sea of faith has much to do with the revolutionary power of the novel as it has developed over the last two centuries To read James Wood is to be shocked into both thinking and feeling how great our debt to the novel is br br In the grand tradition of criticism Wood s work is both commentary and literature in its own right fiercely written polemical and richly poetic in style This book marks the debut of a masterly literary voice


The Nearest Thing to Life

In this remarkable blend of memoir and criticism James Wood has written a master class on the connections between fiction and life He argues that of all the arts fiction has a unique ability to describe the shape of our lives and to rescue the texture of those lives from death and historical oblivion The act of reading is understood here as the most sacred and personal of activities and there are brilliant discussions of individual works among others Chekhov s story The Kiss W G Sebald s i The Emigrants i and Fitzgerald s i The Blue Flower i br br Wood reveals his own intimate relationship with the written word we see the development of a provincial boy growing up in a charged Christian environment the secret joy of his childhood reading the links he makes between reading and blasphemy or between literature and music The final section discusses fiction in the context of exile and homelessness i The Nearest Thing to Life i is not simply a brief tightly argued book by a man commonly regarded as our finest living critic it is also an exhilarating personal account that reflects on and embodies the fruitful conspiracy between reader and writer and critic and asks us to re consider everything that is at stake when we read and write fiction


The Irresponsible Self: On Laughter and the Novel

James Wood has been called our best young critic This is not true He is our best critic he thinks with a sublime ferocity Cynthia Ozick br br Following the collection i The Broken Estate i which established James Wood as the leading critic of his generation i The Irresponsible Self i confirms Wood s preeminence not only as a discerning judge but also as an appreciator of contemporary novels br br In twenty three passionate sparkling dispatches he effortlessly connects his encyclopedic passionate understanding of the literary canon with an equally earnest and appreciative view of the most discussed authors writing today including Franzen Pynchon Rushdie DeLillo Naipaul David Foster Wallace and Zadie Smith br br This collection includes Wood s famous and controversial attack on hysterical realism and his sensitive but unsparing examinations of i White Teeth i and i Brick Lane i i The Irresponsible Self i is indispensable reading for anyone who cares about modern fiction


The Book Against God

Thomas Bunting while neglecting his philosophy Ph D still unfinished after seven years is secretly writing what he hopes will be his masterwork a vast atheistic project to be titled The Book Against God In despair over his failed academic career and failing marriage Bunting is also enraged to the point of near lunacy by his parents religiousness When his father a beloved parish priest suddenly falls ill Bunting returns to the Northern village of his childhood Bunting s hopes that this visit might enable him to finally talk honestly with his parents and sort out his wayward life are soon destroyed br br Comic edgy lyrical and indignant Bunting gives the term unreliable narrator a new twist with his irrepressible incapacity to tell the truth


The Myth of Sisyphus

Throughout history some books have changed the world They have transformed the way we see ourselves and each other They have inspired debate dissent war and revolution They have enlightened outraged provoked and comforted They have enriched lives and destroyed them Now Penguin brings you the works of the great thinkers pioneers radicals and visionaries whose ideas shook civilization and helped make us who we are Inspired by the myth of a man condemned to ceaselessly push a rock up a mountain and watch it roll back to the valley below The Myth of Sisyphus transformed twentieth century philosophy with its impassioned argument for the value of life in a world without religious meaning


The Golovlyov Family

Searingly hot in the summer bitterly cold in the winter the ancestral estate of the Golovlyov family is the end of the road There Anna Petrovna rules with an iron hand over her servants and family until she loses power to the relentless scheming of her hypocritical son Porphyry br br One of the great books of Russian literature The Golovlyov Family is a vivid picture of a condemned and isolated outpost of civilization that for contemporary readers will recall the otherwordly reality of Macondo in Gabriel Garc a M rquez s One Hundred Years of Solitude


Selected Short Stories

Presents fourteen short stories including Love Among the Haystacks The Prussian Officer Odour of Chrysanthemums The Border Line and The Woman Who Rode Away


The Rainbow

Set in the rural Midlands of England i The Rainbow i revolves around three generations of the Brangwens a strong vigorous family deeply involved with the land When Tom Brangwen marries a Polish widow Lydia Lensky and adopts her daughter Anna as his own he is unprepared for the conflict and passion that erupts between them All are seeking individual fulfilment but it is Ursula Anna s spirited daughter who in search for self knowledge rejects the conventional role of womanhood


The Broken Estate: Essays on Literature and Belief, The Myth of Sisyphus, The Fun Stuff: And Other Essays, The Nearest Thing to Life, How Fiction Works, The Book Against God, The Irresponsible Self: On Laughter and the Novel, Selected Short Stories, The Rainbow, The Golovlyov Family