paper trail

Nell Zink's Robert Walser tour; Simon Reynolds to give Mark Fisher Lecture

Nell Zink. Photo: Fred Filkorn

The National Book Critics Circle has announced the thirty finalists for its 2020 awards.

Crime Reads has posted part one of its list of this year’s most anticipated crime novels.

She didn’t seek allies or apologies; as messy as she presented herself to the world, she was clear-eyed about who she was and what she needed,” Kera Bolonick writes in a remembrance of author Elizabeth Wurtzel. “And I loved her, her intensity and loyalty, and the friends and experiences she generously shared with me. Her words and her friendship became life rafts for me during the worst and even best of times. Elizabeth and Prozac Nation gave me—and so many people of our generation, and even the next generation—a voice and, with it, a kind of road map forward.”

At n+1, novelist Nell Zink writes about reading Dostoyevsky’s The Brothers Karamozov, her trip to the psychiatric hospital where Robert Walser spent his later years, and her frustration with specific English translations of Walser’s work. “There’s something self-destructive about this essay,” she writes, “and I’m grateful to the London Review of Books for rejecting it.”

On Friday in London, author Simon Reynolds will deliver the third annual Mark Fisher lecture at Goldsmiths. The theme will be “Bridging the Chasm: the Promise of Music.” Drawing on Fisher’s music writing (much of it collected in the book K-Punk), Reynolds will “explore changing ideas about the relationship between pop and politics: the power that music has held out for successive generations, and the challenge of activating music’s promise in the world beyond.”