Articles by Buzz Poole

November 28, 2014

The Elusive Qualities of Dreams: On Haruki Murakami’s ‘The Strange Library’ 6

Everything that comes to pass in ‘The Strange Library,’ like in so much of Murakami’s fiction, questions the differences between what is real and what is not, and whether such a distinction even matters.

September 25, 2013

Queens As a Metaphor for the World: On Jonathan Lethem’s Dissident Gardens 1

Using the New York City borough of Queens as a linchpin, Jonathan Lethem’s latest novel questions the American twentieth century’s “great comedy: that Communism had never existed, not once. So what was there to oppose?”

January 11, 2013

Graffiti and Glory Days: The Millions Interviews Adam Mansbach 5

The “War on Graffiti” presaged and ushered in zero tolerance policy, prejudicial gang databases, quality of life offenses, epic incarceration — the whole way a generation has experienced law enforcement and personal freedom.

December 22, 2012

A Year in Reading: Buzz Poole 0

Musil wastes no time establishing a scope of ideas that are prescient and read as if written today, fully-realized observations of how commerce and industry render us anonymous cogs in a great global machine that chips away at the individual.

July 5, 2012

Out of the Pool: On Leanne Shapton’s Swimming Studies 3

What her elegant prose allows to float slowly to the surface with the fluid definition of air bubbles is the fact that because she did not succeed at the Olympic trials she has succeeded in life by learning that life is “complicated, mostly sad, and mostly beautiful.”

May 11, 2012

Portrait of a Nation: Mahmoud Dowlatabadi’s The Colonel 1

Dowlatabadi’s nonlinear episodes jump in time and perspective, a puzzle as fragmented whole as when it is in pieces, an appropriate quality for a book about the shattering of individuals and national identity.

February 22, 2012

Fanatic Meets Stalker: Geoff Dyer’s Zona 4

Even if you’ve never given a second thought to quicksand, tried LSD, or watched The Wizard of Oz (Dyer hasn’t), his read of Stalker permits you to square your life with a film that you may or may not know anything about.

January 12, 2012

If You Could Hear A Book, This Is How It Would Look 3

Chromatic documents a segment of today’s music scene by favoring exciting and important visual examples that contribute to a sensory overload that better represents the music than words or notes ever could on their own.

December 21, 2011

A Year in Reading: Buzz Poole 0

I establish a loose plan for the year that dips into unread classics, keeps tabs on new releases, and delves deeper into favorite authors.

May 24, 2011

Dylan at 70 3

Lurking in everything Dylan has ever done, for better or worse, is the myth of America, its chameleon-like quality to be everything to everybody its greatest asset, permitting openness, not for the sake of change but because of its necessity. This is the history Dylan, who turns 70 years old today, has drawn from to create his own history.