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Tuesday New Release Day

New this week: The Making of Zombie Wars by Aleksandar Hemon; A God in Ruins by Kate Atkinson; The Ghost Network by Catie Disabato; The Love Object by Edna O’Brien; The New World by Chris Adrian and Eli Horowitz; Look Who’s Back by Timur Vermes; Paris, He Said by Christine Sneed; Hugo & Rose by Bridget Foley; and Scavenger Loop by David Baker. For more on these and other new titles, check out our Great 2015 Book Preview. Support The Millions: Bookmark this link and start there when you shop at Amazon.

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The WNOR First Half of 2013 Book Preview (January-July)

With no aspirations to completeness or claims about this being the only book preview you’ll need to consult, we present a selection of books we’re excited to see published in the first half of 2013. Our reading tastes dictated the list: included are a lot of translations, works published by small presses, and reprints of out-of-print books. We’re undoubtedly missing some gems and have deliberately skipped over titles you’ll see previewed elsewhere, but hope our offering points you in the right direction nonetheless. A second half preview will follow in July.

Happy new year and happy reading. – Eds.

January

  • Ludwig Hohl (trans. Donna Stonecipher), Ascent (Black Square Editions). A short gem about two mountaineers and two bad decisions, from an overlooked Swiss writer.
  • Alejandro Zambra (trans. Megan McDowell), Ways of Going Home (FSG). The darling of Latin American literature returns with this, his third playful and tender novel to be translated into English.
  • Scott Esposito and Lauren Elkin, The End of Oulipo? (Zero Books). A critical examination of the role and future of the Oulipo.

February

  • William Gaddis (ed. Steven Moore), The Letters of William Gaddis (Dalkey Archive). This promises to be an illuminating collection of letters from the spotlight-wary Gaddis. Including correspondence with notable figures like William Gass, Saul Bellow, Robert Coover, and others.
  • Georges Perec (trans. Daniel Levin Becker), La Boutique Obscure (Melville House). Will answer the burning question: did Perec’s dreams operate under constraints?
  • William Gerhardie, The Polyglots (Melville House). A reprint of a novel called by William Boyd “the most influential English novel of the twentieth century.” A welcome addition to Melville House’s excellent Neversink Library.
  • Arnon Grunberg (trans. Sam Garrett), Tirza (Open Letter). The latest novel by Grunberg, who has also published fiction under the pseudonym Marek van der Jagt, to be translated into English is perhaps his darkest yet.
  • Christa Wolf (trans. Damion Searls), City of Angels or, The Overcoat of Dr. Freud (FSG). Christa Wolf’s last novel, set in Los Angeles.
  • Jacob Slauerhoff (trans. Paul Vincent), The Forbidden Kingdom (Pushkin). The early 20th century Dutch classic, included on the list of “1001 Novels You Must Read Before You Die,” finally available in English.

March

  • William Gass, Middle C (Knopf). The prolific Gass’ third novel and first since his legendary Tunnel.
  • Daniel Spoerri, At the Museum of Natural History: An Incompetent Dialogue? (Kerber). Spoerri, a visual artist and writer (see our earlier post) embarks on a project comparing his work with the collection of the Vienna Museum of Natural History.
  • Anne Carson, Red Doc> (Knopf). A sequel of sorts to Carson’s long poem/novel Autobiography of Red.
  • Robert Desnos (trans. Terry Hale), Liberty or Love! and Morning for Mourning (Atlas). Two novellas by Surrealist poet Desnos, now available in the U.S.
  • Severo Sarduy (trans. Mark Fried), Firefly (Archipelago). A richly lyrical coming of age tale of a boy with a head too big and a sense of direction too poor to do anything but get him into trouble in pre-Castro Cuba.
  • Nathalie Sarraute (trans. Barbara Wright), Childhood (Univ. of Chicago). A reprint of Sarraute’s memoir, with a new forward by Alice Kaplan.
  • Renata Adler, Speedboat and Pitch Dark (NYRB). Two eagerly anticipated reprints of books that have been inexplicably languishing out-of-print for years.
  • E.M. Cioran (trans. Richard Howard), The New Gods (Univ. of Chicago). Reprint of a collection of brooding essays and aphorisms by the inimitable Cioran.
  • Jean-Marie Blas de Robles (trans. Mike Mitchell), Where Tigers Are At Home (Other Press). A massive tale of intrigue spanning centuries, with 17th century scholar and man of dubious science Athanasius Kircher at its heart. Winner of the Prix Medicis.

April

  • Italo Calvino (trans. Martin McLaughlin), Letters 1941-1985 (Princeton). Will hopefully reveal all sorts of dirt on Raymond Queneau.
  • Carlos Rojas (trans. Edith Grossman), The Ingenious Gentleman and Poet Federico Garcia Lorca Ascends to Hell (Yale). A fantastical tale about the death and afterlife of poet Garcia Lorca, translated by Edith Grossman.
  • Luis Chitarroni (trans. Rhett McNeil), The No Variations (Dalkey Archive). A classic of Latin American metafiction compared to the work of David Markson and Cesar Aira.
  • Elfriede Jelinek (trans. Damion Searls), Her Not All Her (Sylph Editions). Jelinek takes on Robert Walser in this play about the writer’s life and work.
  • Stig Dagerman (trans. Steven Hartman), To Kill a Child (Godine). A collection of stories by one of the most famous forgotten Swedish writers.
  • Agnieszka Kuciak, Distant Lands: An Anthology of Poets Who Don’t Exist (White Pines Press). The title says it all.
  • Ulf Peter Hallberg (trans. Anderson & Cassady), European Trash (Sixteen Ways to Remember a Father) (Dzanc). The first title in Dzanc’s Disquiet imprint, which will bring more translated literature to English-language readers.
  • Danielle Collobert (trans. Nathanael), Murder (Litmus Press). Collobert’s first novel, published by Editions Gallimard in 1964, captures the zeitgeist of the period of the Algerian War.
  • Santiago Roncagliolo (trans. Edith Grossman), Hi, This is Conchita (Two Lines Press). Two Lines expands its publishing venture with this comic novella–told entirely in dialogue–from Premio Alfaguara de Novela winner Roncagliolo (Red April).

May

  • Jorge Luis Borges (trans. Katherine Silver), Professor Borges: A Course on English Literature (New Directions). A previously untranslated collection of Borges’ lectures on English literature.
  • Adam Bodor (trans. Paul Olchvary), The Sinistra Zone (New Directions). A black comedy about a man who’s job it is to guard blueberries at a bear preserve in Eastern Europe.
  • Kenneth Cook, Wake in Fright (Text Classics). This 1961 novel has been called “the greatest outback horror story” and is here reprinted by Text Classics.
  • Imre Kertesz (trans. Tim Wilkinson), Dossier K (Melville House). A self-interview that blends memoir and fiction written by the oddly neglected Nobel laureate.
  • Adolfo Bioy Casares and Silvina Ocampo (trans. Levine & Campbell), Where There’s Love, There’s Hate (Melville House). Husband and wife team and collaborators with Borges brought back into print.
  • Franz Fuhmann (trans. Isabel Fargo Cole), The Jew Car (Seagull). A collection of searing stories examining a life lived under the shadow of National Socialism.
  • Marie NDiaye (trans. Jordan Stump), All My Friends (Two Lines). This collection of stories follows the publication of Prix Goncourt winner NDiaye’s acclaimed novel Three Strong Women.

June

  • Guy Davenport (ed. Eric Reese), Guy Davenport Reader (Counterpoint). A collection of essays and stories by the lamentably overlooked Davenport that will hopefully remind people of his greatness.
  • Mario Santiago Papasquiaro (trans. C. Heinowitz & A. Graman), Advice from 1 Disciple of Marx to 1 Heidegger Fanatic (Wave Books). A translation of the book length poem by the co-founder of infrarealism. Readers of The Savage Detectives will recognize Santiago as the Ulises Lima of the novel.
  • Laszlo Krasznahorkai, Seiobo There Below (New Directions). An introduction to a strand of Krasznahorkai’s oeuvre that might surprise some readers.
  • Ror Wolf (trans. Jennifer Marquart), Two or Three Years Later: Forty-Nine Digressions (Open Letter). An “anti-book” of short stories by a writer who mines a similar vein as two Roberts: Walser and Pinget.
  • Samuel Beckett, Echo’s Bones (Grove). Eighty years after it was written, this little known story by Samuel Beckett will come as a welcome addition to the libraries of completists.
  • Curzio Malaparte, Coup D'Etat (Enigma Books). Subtitled “The Technique of Revolution,” this is a translation of the book that earned Malaparte a jail sentence in Mussolini’s Italy. Malaparte’s novel The Skin will be reprinted by NYRB Classics this spring.
  • Jules Supervielle (trans. Terry & Kline), Poems of Jules Supervielle (Black Widow). During his lifetime, Supervielle was praised highly by T.S. Eliot; perhaps this new translation will help resuscitate his posthumous reputation.
  • Simon Leys, The Hall of Uselessness (NYRB). At long last, the great Australian essayist’s work is gathered in a selection ranging from topics as diverse as Chinese history (of which Leys is a scholar) and “the Quixotism of the sea.”
  • Sibylle Lewitscharoff (trans. Katy Derbyshire), Apostoloff (Seagull). A novel of bitterness and reckoning by an award-winning German writer.
  • Stephen Romer (ed.), French Decadent Tales (Oxford). Translator Stephen Romer collects thirty-six dark and darkly humorous tales from 1880-1900, including short stories by Maupassant, Leon Bloy, and Georges Rodenbach.

July

  • Giacomo Leopardi, Zibaldone (FSG). A whopping 2600-page collection of the Italian poet’s notebooks. This is the first time the notebooks have been made available in their entirety in English. 
  • Marguerite Duras (trans. Ali & Murphy), L'Amour (Open Letter). A previously untranslated novel by Marguerite Duras.
  • Almantas Samalavicius, The Dedalus Book of Lithuanian Literature (Dedalus). A century-spanning collection of Lithuanian literature, reflecting the culture’s changing political and artistic position.
  • Alexander Kluge (trans. Martin Chalmers), Air Raid (Seagull Books). Kluge’s book about the near total destruction of his German hometown during World War II, finally published in English. With an appreciation by W.G. Sebald.

Forthcoming (no publication date listed)

  • Emil Hakl (trans. Marek Tomin), The Witch’s Flight (Twisted Spoon). A dark chronicle of the consequences of an inexplicable crime.
  • Bruno Jasienski, (trans. Gauger & Torr) The Legs of Izolda Morgan (Twisted Spoon). A classic of Polish Futurism, published along with Jasienski’s manifestos and later pieces.
  • Pierre Mac Orlean (trans. Napolean Jeffries), A Handbook for the Perfect Adventurer (Wakefield). A tongue-in-cheek guide for the armchair adventurer.
  • Jean Ferry (trans. Edward Gauvin), The Conductor & Other Tales (Wakefield). A collection of humorous stories by noted screenwriter and member of the College of Pataphysics.
  • Miklos Szentkuthy, Towards the One and Only Metaphor (Contra Mundum). The second book in the eight-volume St. Orpheus Breviary, written by an author who was praised as “out-Prousting Proust.”

Presenting the new cover for The Walled Citya novel by Ryan Graudin about a lawless city, lost sisters, a vengeful drug lord, and 18 days to escape.

There are three rules of survival in the Walled City: Run fast. Trust no one. Always carry your knife. Right now, my life depends completely on the first. Run, run, run.

The Walled City releases November 4, 2014. Get a head start and meet Dai, Jin, and Mei Yee right now. The early reviews on Goodreads have been stellar and we’d love to hear what everyone else has to say too! Share your thoughts about the preview with us on social using #TheWalledCity and you might get a surprise…

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GUYS OMG I CAN FINALLY SHOW YOU my new book! Here is a preview of the first chapter of Awkward, my middle grade graphic novel for Yen Press 8D  This baby lands in stores everywhere this summer, July 25, and it’s what I’ve been working on so quietly for the last year and a half!!! It’s available for pre-order in every self-respecting book-selling establishment (physical or online), for those who do not want to wait :D

(BONUS: for Dramacon and Nightschool fans–Mr. Raccoon makes background appearances in this book, as well, and there are two of his cameos in this preview, can you find himmmm :3)

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Look what came in the mail today!  My dummy book made is safely (lulu packages their books really well), and I’m really happy with the result. 

A few things I will do for the next book that I neglected with this dummy book:

-BLEED-lulu warns about this anyways.  A lot of the pages have artwork running off because I didn’t bother to pay attention to bleed.

-Do not make artwork too dark, lighten it for printing.  My darker stuff is super dark, so I will lighten it for printing purposes a tad so details can be seen.

-I’ll organize sections in the book, such as speedpaints and concepts in one area, characters in another ect.  They’ll be sectioned by ‘chapters’ in some way.

The real book is planned to come out next year with about 100 artworks, maybe a tutorial, and just a bunch of my personal stuff that will not be uploaded online.  :)

“Many of the stories in Nothing Looks Familiar focus on characters marginalized by society, from bullied kids to meth-smoking mothers—each one stepping out from places of danger and unhappiness and into the great unknown, but determined to come out on the other side changed. Who better than Shawn Syms to guide them—and us—through?”

Continue reading Little Fiction’s 2014-15 Book Preview.

Introduction to Grace


by Pastor Brad

With the advent and shear onslaught of the World Wide Web, coupled with the explosion of social media, virtually anyone can get famous for saying or doing almost anything. The whole of society is seeking to become the next “viral sensation” that propels them from small-time to big-time with only a few clicks, even if that “fame” is only short-lived.

The same holds true in the religious realm. There are a plethora of religious and spiritual writers, bloggers, and pastors all (most of them, anyway) saying great things, though many of them different and, indeed, opposed. I fear that the next hurdle for many Christians of the incumbent generation is to discern between the truly passionate man of God and those who are merely speaking and serving for the propping up and exaltation of their own name.

“Celebrity Pastors” are all the craze in twenty-first century America. And don’t get me wrong, uniting under one voice for the cause of Christ and the sake of the gospel is beneficial and advantageous, but I’m worried that many so-called believers are letting a man tell them what the Bible says instead of finding it out for themselves. Far too many believers are tweeting the Scriptures without really knowing what the Scriptures mean. Many have let the Internet be their Bible and social media their devotional, a travesty to the nth degree. But, still, this next generation of preachers and expositors of the Word produces many that say nice things without putting much substance behind it. There’s a lot of fluffy, flimsy theology being postured to crowds of hungry souls across these United States, to the detriment of those who truly yearn to know God.

The idea of a “celebrity pastor” is somewhat alarming and disconcerting. So, too, did A. W. Tozer suspect, when he wrote, “Promoting self under the guise of promoting Christ is currently so common as to excite little notice.”

Most don’t even realize the wool that’s being pulled over their eyes as these “life coaches” masquerade as ministers of the gospel and shepherds of grace. Don’t be fooled, though. They’re nothing more than charlatans and dogs, wolves in sheep’s clothing. “Beware of false prophets, who come to you in sheep’s clothing but inwardly are ravenous wolves” (Matt. 7:15). A “life coaching” gospel is a false gospel. And up is springing a spiritually oblivious and undiscerning age that’s careening towards a precipice, blind to their own impending destruction.

But, I digress.

I must confess, I didn’t always know what God would have me to do in life, and, surely, His molding and fashioning of me is far from complete. On the contrary, it’s merely just begun, it’s but in its inception. But what I do know is that God would have me be sold out for Him, living with an abandon and conviction that only springs out of being continually captured by the gospel of Jesus’s untold, unbridled grace. It’s in that light that these chapters were formed.

Let me be forthcoming with what’s about to transpire by giving you a little insight about myself. I grew up in a fundamental, Bible-believing, Baptist home. I’m the son of two generations of pastors, with both grandfathers serving as preachers and teachers in various settings and ministries. My dad’s dad was a Bible doctrines professor at a major Christian university in the Southeast for nearly thirty years. My father is a senior pastor, who has himself accumulated over thirty years of pastoral ministry experience. Needless to say, I’ve grown up in church. My closest friends were always those with whom I attended church. Sunday School is a part of my molecular composition. And before you conjure up any more mistaken connotations or prejudices about me, and before you get the wrong idea about the intentions of what’s to follow, it’s necessary for me to be very clear with the aim of these pages.

The goals in writing this little book were diverse, but allow me to, first, set forth what was not and is not the purpose of this book.

It’s not for shock-and-awe, or to garner attention, or to become “famous” amongst Evangelical circles. My aspirations weren’t to sell millions of copies or be a New York Times best seller. As amazing an accomplishment as that would be, my intentions weren’t so superficial or egotistical.

It’s also not to serve as a diatribe against the Baptist denomination, or fundamentalism as a whole, for what it’s become. This isn’t the method through which I’m going to express my frustrations with my upbringing or how I blame my parents for how I am today.

This isn’t me, a hipster-millennial of generation-X, sticking a disrespectful finger in the face of so many staunch defenders and tireless stalwarts of the Christian faith that have gone before me and who have stood and fought to preserve the truths of the gospel we hold so dear today.

This is none of those things.

I wrote this book for the mere fact that I needed to read it. I wrote this book for me, for my own benefit, that through the course of study and prayer and meditation, has come to draw me nearer to my Lord and Savior than I ever thought possible. And lest you think this admission the epitome of selfishness and conceit, allow me to add additional clarification.

Whenever I get up to preach or speak in any setting, I always try to mention that the words I’m about to say and the points I’m about to make were first applied to myself, to my own heart and life. I don’t stand behind podiums and lecterns with the notion that I’ve somehow figured this thing out and that I have all the answers. It’s actually nearer to the antithesis of that. I speak and teach solely because I know with unflappable certainty that that’s God’s will for my life. I’m no expert, I’m just a sinner saved by God’s matchless grace, and I desperately want people everywhere to see and know the power of this transforming grace. That’s the approach of every one of my talks, for while we might not share the same issues and the same problems and the same circumstances and the same worries and the same heartaches, we all have the same need and the same Solution and Remedy for that need, namely, Jesus Christ.

As He is the focus of Scripture, and should be the singular focus of our sermons, so, too, is He the unparalleled Foundation and Cornerstone of all that’s to come in these discourses. He is and “shall be the centre to which all the lines of [this book] shall be drawn.”

My heart is that we would see Jesus—the real Jesus—and be so humbled and awed and amazed by what we see that our lives can’t help but respond in the humble pursuit of holiness that He so longs for us to yield to.

For quite some time now, I’ve been searching, longing, and yearning to find the true meaning of the Christian life. If you were to ask, “What’s the Christian life all about?” to a panel of the most popular pastors in America today, you would probably get a mixed bag of answers. But what I feel the Holy Spirit has impressed upon me, is that our whole lives are to be captured in a simple, faithful look—a perpetual “looking to Jesus, the founder and perfecter of our faith” (Heb. 12:2). This is what I believe our lives are to be about; and, moreover, this is what these pages attempt to accomplish: to cause us to see Jesus and His grace with fresh eyes, ready minds, and tender hearts. He must take the spotlight and we must retreat to the shadows.

I’m very leery of theologians and pastors and scholars alike who claim they’ve “figured out the Scriptures.” The vast truths and depths of knowledge contained in God’s Word can never be plumbed, nor can anyone ever attain its full apprehension. The bonds of human intellect can’t bear to comprehend the enormity of God’s full forgiveness and grace. This is a fact that must be acknowledged and accepted, or else we stand on the dangerous ground of our own assumptions and preconceived notions about God and His Word.

We humans are finite beings: there’s only so much that we’re able to understand and ascertain. Our reach is limited. Nevertheless, in our pride, we like to think much more of ourselves than we actually are, when in reality, we’re fallible, prone to error, and always failing. We’re addicted to pleasing ourselves and championing our own worth, whatever we deem that to be. We mess things up, a lot, and, consequently, our entire lives have become about fixing the very mess that we’ve made.

We possess fixed, finite minds—so why do we try and put an infinite God and His infallible Word into a neat and tidy box that we can make sense of? How pompous is it of us to assume that God works in ways that we can understand? How presumptuous is it to conclude that His power and grace are things we can fully comprehend? For one to place the God of Universe into such a box, which the mind of man might understand in full, is, perhaps, the most audacious act of human egotism.

With that said, I’m probably—no—I’m definitely going to offend some by what transpires in the following pages, and that’s okay. Grace itself is offensive and scandalous, sparking controversy and strife amongst all those who attempt to dissect and parse it. It’s unruly and wild, untamed and unconstrained. It’s unpredictable and dangerous, and “way more radical, offensive, liberating, shocking, and counterintuitive than any of us realize … Like Aslan in C. S. Lewis’ Chronicles of Narnia, the gospel is good but not safe.” It’s risky and radical, and goes against all intrinsic notions of fairness and justice.

What I hope you see in the following pages, is that, quintessentially, grace isn’t a doctrine. Yes, we can exegete the doctrine of grace and concern ourselves with the implications thereof upon our systematic theology, but, in truth, doing so robs grace of its raw power. Impotent grace is grace that stays in the classroom; if you want to make grace powerless, put it in a textbook, and make seminarians memorize the tenets of it. Castrating grace is among the many travesties myriads of so-called theologians are profoundly guilty of.

No, what I hope to show you throughout this little work is nothing but grace, true grace, undomesticated and unadulterated. For, genuine grace “is not a doctrine to be expounded, but a hug to be experienced.”

So, consider yourself hugged.

This post is used by permission and has been adapted from its original format in Pastor Brad’s new book, GRACE: So Much More Than You Know & So Much Better Than You Think, which is available for purchase here: PURCHASE.


Devotional Series: Introduction to Grace (#wtsdevo grace)

Posted by: Bradley \ Personal // Walk the Same