Rick Moody

Rick Moody is earning reviews so warm they’re glowing for his sixth novel, Hotels of North America - a darkly comic portrait of a man whose life - including his motivational speaking career, the dissolution of his marriage, the separation from his beloved daughter, and his devotion to an amour known only as "K." – is revealed through his online reviews.

 

Here are three:

 

“It's a little book, a bagatelle but it's a little book of irony and wit and heartbreak.” – Dwight Garner, The New York Times

"Formally daring, often very funny, and surprisingly moving … The story unfolds as a series of online reviews for the Web site RateYourLodging.com, all of which have been submitted by one Reginald Edward Morse, a reviewer of such entertaining prolixity and discursive majesty that the adjective 'Nabokovian' immediately comes to mind. (It will come to mind more than once throughout the novel.)" – Jeff Turrentine, The Washington Post

"Throughout the novel, Morse's shattered life takes on ever sharper edges, as he plows into the desultory American landscape with all the eagerness of a middle-aged man of waning prospects...Moody's sweet spot in Hotels of North America is quotidian detail tinged with some deeper existential unease: “Fear and Trembling at the Holiday Inn,” if you will. Over and over, with an impressive attention to the nuances of the hospitality industry, Moody manages to suffuse your average roadside lodging with a kind of life-sapping dread...This is a very literary novel, cleverly constructed and written in an arch, clever, very literary voice, at once mannered and unrestrained, like an aging patrician after his third drink...But if Moody can sometimes untether himself from plot and character, it is because he seems more interested in existential truths than novelistic conventions. This novel is short and plangent and ... frequently beautiful. If it were a hotel room, you'd give it four stars. ― Alexander Nazaryan, Newsweek

Rick Moody’s Top Ten List

1. The Divine Comedy by Dante Alighieri (1321).
2. Essays by Michel de Montaigne (1533-92). 
3. Don Quixote by Miguel de Cervantes (1605, 1615).
4. Tristram Shandy by Laurence Sterne (1759–67).
5. Moby-Dick by Herman Melville (1851).
6. The Brothers Karamazov by Fyodor Dostoevsky (1880).
7. Madame Bovary by Gustave Flaubert (1857).
8. Ulysses by James Joyce (1922).
9. To the Lighthouse by Virginia Woolf (1927).
10. The Magic Mountain by Thomas Mann (1924).

New List

Joyce Carol Oates

1. The Possessed by Fyodor Dostoevsky (1872).
2. In Search of Lost Time by Marcel Proust (1913–27).
3. Wuthering Heights by Emily Brontë (1847).
4. Moby-Dick by Herman Melville (1851).
5. Ulysses by James Joyce (1922).
6. Independent People by Halldór Laxness (1934).
7. Absalom, Absalom! by William Faulkner (1936).
8. One Hundred Years of Solitude by Gabriel García Márquez (1967).
9. Tropic of Cancer by Henry Miller (1934).
10. The Stranger by Albert Camus (1942).

 

Classic List

Charles Palliser

 

1. Adolphe by Benjamin Constant (1816).
2. At Swim-Two-Birds by Flann O'Brien (1939).
3. The Private Memoirs and Confessions of a Justified Sinner by James Hogg (1824).
4. Anton Reiser by Karl Philipp Moritz (1785-90).
5. The Golovlyev Family by Mikhail Saltykov-Shchedrin (1876).
6. The Slaves of Solitude by Patrick Hamilton (1947).
7. The Tale of Genji by Shikibu Murasaki (c. 1001–1010 c.e.).
8. The Dukays by Lajos Zilahy. (1949)
9. Effi Briest by Theodor Fontane (1896).
10. The Maias by Eca de Queiroz (1888).

 

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