Tuesday, January 12, 2010

The Late Work of Margaret Kroftis a novella by Mark Gluth

A beautiful book, suffused with deep melancholy. The writing is extremely spare, indeed, some of the most minimalistic I've encountered (the comparison with Agota Kristoff on the back cover--especially the first part of her trilogy, The Notebook-- is apt). There is an accumulating of emotional intensity conveyed by the chains of very short, simple delarative sentences which is quite dreamily incantory, even magical.

Mark Gluth is another tremendously talented young writer on the scene belying the pessimism expressed in so many quarters about the future of American book culture.

I respectfully disagree, however, with one reviewer over on the Goodreads website who suggests this book can easily be read in an afternoon. I found the emotional buildup frequently to be too much all at once and needed to take beaks to relieve the tension and reflect on what I was reading. I think a couple of days reading time is more realistic.

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