June 14, 2009 |
Far Bright Star A Novel Robert Olmstead Algonquin Books of Chapel Hill: 208 pp., $23.95 "Thus far the summer of 1916 had been a siege of wrathy wind and heated air. Dust and light. Sand and light. Wind and light." So begins the story of Napoleon Childs, hard-hearted U.S. cavalryman on a manhunt. Napoleon and his bedraggled men scour the mountains of Mexico in search of Pancho Villa. Robert Olmstead is a gorgeous writer, a master of regret. And it's far too late for Napoleon Childs to ask himself why. "The world's full of no-good people, he thought, and he included himself."
April 10, 1996 |
A fifth-generation Vermont farmer, the grandfather in Robert Olmstead's memoir had put in 14-hour days all his life on the endless practical tasks demanded by his flourishing dairy spread. Now, near 70 and stricken with a cancer that would prove fatal, he was spending less time on the chores and more time giving orders and, like his 200 Holsteins, ruminating. "He was ready to sit down in his rocker again," Olmstead portrays him on one summer evening, "and go back to enjoying his mind.
May 23, 1993 |
AMERICA BY LAND: A Novel by Robert Olmstead (Random House: $20; 241 pp.) Robert Olmstead's third book is indeed a novel, as the subtitle says, but it's hard to tell whether "America by Land" is intended to be a serious work or updated pulp fiction. "Most of what's left behind is left behind," Olmstead writes at one point: "Out on the road you don't need what's left behind, unless you need it."
April 17, 1989 |
Carolyn See, novelist and since 1981 a regular book reviewer for The Times, has won a Guggenheim Fellowship for fiction. The John Simon Guggenheim Memorial Foundation awards fellowships annually to artists, scholars and scientists "on the basis of unusually distinguished achievement in the past and exceptional promise for future accomplishment." This year's 198 winners, chosen from among 3,144 applicants, will receive awards totaling $5,251,000, according to an announcement by foundation president Joel Connarroe in New York earlier this week.
March 31, 2003 |
A magazine long under wraps began showing up unannounced at a few independent bookstores this week, with an improbable name (The Believer) and a curious cover (touting Salman Rushdie's conversation with Terry Gilliam; the dark, indie band Interpol; and poet Anne Carson, a classics professor).