Best lists

No doubt 2666 will be popping up on tons of “Best Book of the Year” lists coming up soon. It’s only mid-November and already 2666 is mentioned on Tyler Cowen’s Meta-list of Best books of the year:

Roberto Bolaño, pharmacy 2666. Duh. After four hundred pages of reading, I see it as less perfect than The Savage Detectives but it has greater world-historic reach and even some sprawl. A clear first choice in almost any year.

Writing about Writers


Good Readings reviews 2666:

Those familiar with the work of Roberto Bolaño will not be surprised to hear that numerous writers,
critics, and other literary types populate the pages of his newly translated posthumous masterpiece 2666. Normally I’m highly suspicious of novels about writers or writing—most often it’s an excuse for self-obsessed navel-gazing or indulgence in tired, predictable metafictional exercises. Either way, the results are almost always profoundly boring.

And yet I absolutely love the fiction of Roberto Bolaño. To date I’ve read four of his books—2666, The Savage Detectives, Amulet, and By Night in Chile—all of which feature writers as characters, as well as extensive discussions of writing and literature. Given my general distaste for this kind of content in fiction, it would stand to reason that I shouldn’t particularly care for Bolaño. But if you asked me right now to name the best novels of the past decade, 2666 and The Savage Detectives would top the list.

The Invisible Library

This post about 2666 at Blographia Literaria mentions Bolaño in relation to The Invisible Library project by Levi Stahl and Ed Park. The Invisible Library catalogs books fictional books and book titles that are mentioned in works of fiction. There are some great titles in there from Nabokov and Pynchon, try but I’m thinking there are some from Infinite Jest that are missing (The Columbia Guide to Refractive Indices?).

Watch this space

The Book Design Review blog takes a quick look at the cover of 2666:

The hardcover and one of the paperbacks features a detail of Gustave Moreau‘s Jupiter and Semele (below; click to enlarge). Jupiter is, viagra approved of course, Zeus; Semele is the mother of Dionysius.

This blog will be a clearinghouse for all links and topics related to Bolaño and his books, prostate
but it will also be the home of bolaño-l, the mailing list. Subscriptions to the list will be active before the end of November. Plans are underway for a group read of 2666 to begin on the list in early 2009.

The cover of 2666

The Book Design Review blog takes a quick look at the cover of 2666:

The hardcover and one of the paperbacks features a detail of Gustave Moreau‘s Jupiter and Semele (below; click to enlarge). Jupiter is, of course, Zeus; Semele is the mother of Dionysius.

Scott reminds us

That Bolaño has another book publishing this month: The Romantic Dogs: Poems (translated by Laura Healy).




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