Victor Hugo gasps as the flaming spire falls through the roof. Quasimodo emerges from the embers. He is stunned. Can it be true? The bell towers are intact. He climbs to ring a carillon call of relief.
Notre Dame. Our Lady of Paris survives. She lives to see her baby on the altar on Good Friday. Okay. He’s nailed to a cross. But. Hey. He’ll rise on Easter Sunday. As will The Cathedral. Yay.
- Photo. Cathedral of St. John the Divine. NYC.
Christmas Eve 2018. Ben Levine.
Bizarre coincidence. St. John had a fire this week. On Palm Sunday.
Best of the Year
Golden Hill, Francis Spufford
Home Fire, Kamila Shamsie
Autumn, Ali Smith
Shipping Out, David Foster Wallace
Read the rest of her 2018 List at BOOK-TREKS.COM
Sports. World Series. First time Boston and (former) Brooklyn Dodgers meet since 1916, when they were called the Robins and Babe Ruth pitched for the BoSox.
Books. Read 2. Both had cats but liked them anyway. French Exit by Patrick deWitt. Amusant. Author of The Sisters Brothers. Red River by Amy Lloyd. Capote-worthy psycho character.
Television. Well Amazon. 2 more Romanoffs. Very different. Loved each. Modern marriage gone bad. Sweet revenge. And. Christina Hendricks with Isabelle Huppert. Diabolique.
Politics. Liberal cable viewers. On a good day 2 million. Trump Twitter followers 53 million. Oops.
The Man Booker Prize winner this year is Anna Burns from Northern Ireland for Milkman. It is her third novel. The prize was for authors in the Commonwealth countries of the United Kingdom until recent years when it included Americans. There was also a separate Orange Prize which has been since sponsored by others for only women authors. However, in the past two decades, women have been well represented and even dominated the Booker short list in 2018.
Hilary Mantel won the Man Booker twice. Other women winners include Margaret Atwood. A.S. Byatt. My favorite Luminaries Eleanor Catton. Anne Enright. And this year Anna Burns.
So why a separate prize for women? Good writing is. Good writing.
August in the City. Supposed to be steamy and empty. The former too true. The latter not. Besides the throngs of flip-flopping tourists along Central Park West and up to Le Pain Quotidien, it’s been a stream of visiting family and friends. That’s good.
Still time to catch Sunday tv faves. Succession finale. Too soon. Want more! Campy soap with great cast. Brian Cox as media mogul Logan Roy. Jeremy Strong as snivelling Don Jr.-esque son and Kieran Culkin as the rollicking runt. Sarah Snook the only miss. Looking forward to next year. Sharp Objects remains a riveting dark mother-daughter dynamic. The Affair best-written since the first. And snuck in Cristina Alger’s inane beach book, The Banker’s Wife.
Man Booker Long List announced. Dystopia and Disruption themes. Signs of the times to be sure. But. I want to escape all that. Won’t be reading The Mars Room by Rachel Kushner. Clausty on steroids. Not sure about the others on the list. Seems a dark collection.
It’s clearly a good year for Canada’s Michael Ondaatje. His 1992 The English Patient won the Man Booker Golden Prize for the best novel in the past five decades. Just read his latest, Warlight which made this year’s list. A post-World War II story, which was good, but didn’t love it as much as one of my all time faves, The Cat’s Table.