Sunday, March 05, 2006

Sunday Book Reviews

Rip It Up and Start Again: Postpunk, 1978-1984 by Simon Reynolds. Reviewed in the New York Times by Jim Windolf: "The story of punk's aftermath is more fragmented, with no clear beginning, a mixed-up middle and a whimper of an ending. Pop-culture historians have found it easy to avoid. With "Rip It Up and Start Again," the brainy music critic Simon Reynolds steps forward to accept the challenge. He is a brave man."

The Amalgamation Polka by Stephen Wright. Reviewed in the Washington Post by John Wray: "Wright is nothing if not ambitious, and the energy with which he throws himself into this world -- which bears only a passing resemblance to 19th-century America -- is a wonder to behold. The novel overflows with charlatans, whores, preachers, soldiers-of-fortune, madmen and even a handful of pirates, all of them declaiming, at the tops of their lungs, in language that often borders on free verse. The prose is unapologetically purple."

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