January 30, 2014 |
In an ambitious act of reinvention, Penguin has announced that it will reissue, in new translations, all 75 of Georges Simenon's Inspector Maigret mysteries -- some of the bleakest, and best, works ever produced in the genre. The first two are out already, including “Pietr the Latvian,” originally published in 1930, the earliest book to feature the iconic Paris police inspector. Simenon, of course, was insanely prolific; in addition to his Maigret novels , he also produced 117 romans durs , or hard novels, which Luc Sante describes in a 2007 Bookforum essay as “punishing studies of human beings driven by circumstance and personality to the ends of their tethers” -- a total of 400-plus books in all. The best of these (“Red Lights,” “Dirty Snow,” as well as a number of the Maigrets)
June 13, 2013 |
Writers of literary fiction are not typically known for their fashion sense, but maybe they can learn. Or maybe the fashionable can be turned onto literary fiction, given the opportunity. Enter Barney's . It has paired the Orlebar Brown clothing line with the Paris Review and things went swimmingly. Four designer swim trunks being offered this summer are based on art from the Paris Review, particularly some vintage cover designs. The swim trunks, which Barney's writes are "tailored according to Savile Row specifications," retail for $320.
June 7, 2013 |
George Plimpton spent a lifetime stepping into other people's shoes. It's only fitting that he's finally talking about what it was like to walk in his own. That this is possible, 10 years after his death in 2003 when Plimpton was a robust 76, is due to a treasure trove of audio, video and written archives. Filmmakers Tom Bean and Luke Poling have polished up the best of it in an engaging new documentary aptly titled "Plimpton! Starring George Plimpton as Himself. " The movie by the writing/directing pair is almost as captivating as their subject.
June 4, 2013 |
George Plimpton's greatest story was his own life. There was very little the renowned journalist, writer and longtime editor of the literary journal the Paris Review didn't try. During a career that spanned the second half of the 20th century, Plimpton was a quarterback for the Detroit Lions, pitched at Yankee Stadium, sparred with Archie Moore, played the triangle with the New York Philharmonic, performed stand-up comedy, flipped on a trapeze and...
April 2, 2013 |
Steven Soderbergh plans to direct a 12-hour adaptation of John Barth's 1960 novel "The Sot-Weed Factor. " The book is a 768-page epic -- a satirical epic -- set on a Maryland tobacco farm in the 18th century. “I was going to do it as a movie, but I couldn't figure it out. So now I've had it adapted as 12 one-hour episodes,” Soderbergh tells Entertainment Weekly. The adaptation was done, at least in part, by James Greer, the novelist and former Guided by Voices bassist who lives in Los Angeles when not on tour with his band Détective . In 2011, in a piece about Barth for the Los Angeles Review of Books, Greer provided a window into his work on the project.
March 29, 2013 |
George Plimpton knew the score. A generation or so ago, the late Paris Review editor developed what he called the "Small Ball Theory" of sports writing, which posits "a correlation between the standard of writing about a particular sport and the ball it utilizes - that the smaller the ball, the more formidable the literature. " There are, he explained, "superb books about golf, very good books about baseball, not many good books about football or soccer, very few good books about basketball and no good books at all about beach balls.