Year in Reading

A Year in Reading: Michael Cunningham

By posted at 7:00 am on December 16, 2010 2


My big project over the last year has been (finally) reading Proust’s In Search of Lost Time, about which nothing really need be said. I have, however, taken periodic Proust breaks and read novels that don’t require 10,000 hours of uninterrupted attention.

covercoverI could list a dozen or more good novels I’ve read, but a particular favorite was Emma Donoghue’s Room, which concerns a young woman and her five-year-old son who are kept captive by a psychopath in a single room. It’s amazing what Donoghue is able to do within that tiny physical space. If we were worried (and I don’t think we should be) about a lack of originality and ambition in contemporary novels, here’s one that conjures an enormous story out of simple, even miniature, circumstances. I also tremendously enjoyed a young adult novel called The Hunger Games, by Suzanne Collins, which imagines a future world in which children are selected to fight to the death, for a vast TV audience. It’s well-written, completely engrossing, and involves a kick-ass girl who never needs to be rescued by the boys. What’s not to like about that?

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2 Responses to “A Year in Reading: Michael Cunningham”

  1. prairie dog magazine | dog blog
    at 2:24 pm on December 16, 2010

    […] including Joshua Cohen sounding about as clever as his novels make him seem, Michael Cunningham bragging about reading Proust, and Dan Kois, who chose Jonathan Franzen’s Freedom and doesn’t feel great about it: […]

  2. « Extra credit Outpost19
    at 7:21 pm on December 19, 2010

    […] kind of interesting to learn that the novelist Michael Cunningham has been buried in Proust, while Jenny Davidson, a  novelist and Columbia English lit prof, plows […]

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