Thursday, May 23, 2013

Julie Sarkissian

Julie Sarkissian is a graduate of Princeton University, where she won the Francis Leon Paige Award for creative writing, and holds an MFA in Creative Writing from The New School. Her new novel is Dear Lucy.

Recently I asked the author about what she was reading. Sarkissian's reply:
Give Sorrow Words: Maryse Holders Letters From Mexico

Yikes! This book – an epistolary journal of a young American woman’s degrading sexual affairs in Mexico – is almost too painful to read but just too compelling to put down. Witnessing in such gory detail a smart, educated and talented woman subject herself to being used and abused by man after man is excruciating, but her honesty binds you to her suffering in such a way that feels like to turn away from her pain would be to inflict on her yet another injustice.

A Sport and a Pastime – James Salter

As embarrassing as it is, I had never read James Salter until last week. But when a new friend invited me to see him read at the 92Y, I didn’t want to reveal myself as the philistine I am. So in preparation for our date, I bought A Sport and A Pastime and tore through half the novel in one sitting. The pages turned themselves. The novel strikes an elegant balance between beautiful, emotionally wrought language and unexpected literary technique. It also confirms France as best place in the world to have a passionate sexual affair. Easy to see why this book is a classic.

Speed Boat – Renata Adler

After hearing so much buzz, by people more erudite than I, about the reissue of the post-modern classic, Speedboat, by Renata Adler, I had to check it out. The sentences of this novel are gorgeous and clever and the structure and pacing are exhilarating. But I have to admit I can get lost with experimental literature, so I hope I don’t miss too much of what this has to offer because I’m a post-modern neophyte. Regardless, I’m excited to be challenging myself to read something out of my wheelhouse!
Visit Julie Sarkissian's website.

The Page 69 Test: Dear Lucy.

--Marshal Zeringue