John Pistelli


Grant Morrison, Sebastian O | The Mystery Play

Sebastian O / The Mystery Play by Grant Morrison My rating: 4 of 5 stars On the one hand, the best audience for this book might be Morrison completists, those … Continue reading

26 July 2018 · Leave a comment

J. D. Bernal, The World, the Flesh, and the Devil

The World, the Flesh and the Devil: An Enquiry Into the Future of the Three Enemies of the Rational Soul by J.D. Bernal My rating: 3 of 5 stars When … Continue reading

28 April 2018 · 2 Comments

Against Intellectual Biblioclasm

[This is an expansion of a brief response I posted yesterday to Tumblr in reply to user macrolit, who, upon being denounced for sharing a quote from Simone de Beauvoir … Continue reading

13 January 2018 · 3 Comments

Virginia Woolf, Mrs. Dalloway

Mrs. Dalloway by Virginia Woolf My rating: 5 of 5 stars Few novels have been as ill-served by their canonization as Mrs. Dalloway has. Assimilated to the classic tradition of … Continue reading

25 October 2017 · 4 Comments

César Aira, Ema, the Captive

Ema, the Captive by César Aira My rating: 4 of 5 stars Reading and rereading Wilde over the years, I note a fact that his panegyrists seem not even to … Continue reading

22 May 2017 · 10 Comments

In Defense of Aesthetic Criticism

Vox explains the new political pop culture criticism: But whether it’s superficial or perceptive, today’s pop cultural criticism can’t seem to ignore social issues. Another excerpt, on how today’s “your … Continue reading

23 April 2017 · 5 Comments

Is David Mitchell the William Faulkner of the Twenty-First Century?

Clickbait title, I know, but please bear with me. I think I’m onto something; call it— An Essay on Fiction and Reality, Eternity and Time In the mid-1970s, Hugh Kenner wrote … Continue reading

15 August 2016 · Leave a comment

Philip Roth, American Pastoral

American Pastoral by Philip Roth My rating: 5 of 5 stars American Pastoral is a novel whose motto is famously the following, its narrator’s exclamation just before he learns that … Continue reading

2 May 2016 · 4 Comments

Arthur Conan Doyle, The Sign of Four

The Sign of Four by Arthur Conan Doyle My rating: 3 of 5 stars A few years ago, while studying the fin de siècle, I figured I should read some … Continue reading

23 February 2016 · 2 Comments

Jeanette Winterson, Art Objects

Art Objects: Essays on Ecstasy and Effrontery by Jeanette Winterson My rating: 4 of 5 stars I read this collection of essays concurrently with Winterson’s novel, Art and Lies, and … Continue reading

13 January 2016 · 1 Comment