A Warm Welcome to Alienated Majesty
Malvern Books Blog
by Tracey
5M ago
We’re delighted to bring you some excellent news: our former brick-and-mortar home at 613 West 29th Street is now the location of a wonderful new bookstore, Alienated Majesty. We spoke with the store’s owners, José and Melynda, to find out more about their exciting literary venture… Alienated Majesty is a memorable name… where does it come from? José thought of it! It comes from Ralph Waldo Emerson’s essay “Self Reliance”: “in every work of genius we recognize our own rejected thoughts; they come back to us with a certain alienated majesty.” We liked the optimistic feel of the quote. We hope ..read more
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Staff Pick: Long Live the Post Horn!
Malvern Books Blog
by Tracey
5M ago
Long Live the Post Horn! by Vigdis Hjorth, translated by Charlotte Barslund  I was first drawn to this slim, unassuming novel by its title—what on earth is a post horn, I wondered, and why should we rejoice in its longevity? The source of the title is given in the epigraph—it’s a quote from Constantin Constantius, the narrator in Kierkegaard’s Repetition: A Venture in Experimental Psychology: Long live the post horn! It’s my instrument for many reasons, principally because you can never be sure to coax the same tone from it twice; a post horn is capable of producing an infinite number of ..read more
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Staff Pick: The Anti-Racist Writing Workshop
Malvern Books Blog
by Tracey
5M ago
The Anti-Racist Writing Workshop: How to Decolonize the Creative Classroom by Felicia Rose Chavezby JP Poole When Felicia Rose Chavez was a student in The University of Iowa’s nonfiction program, she sat in a workshop and listened to other students complain that they didn’t understand her work. As is common in writing workshops, she listened in silence, forced to absorb the negative comments lobbed her way. Chavez cites Beth Nguyen, who also spent a workshop session in silence, as participants talked about not knowing what dim sum was and how it made “the whole piece confusing.” Students of co ..read more
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Staff Picks: The Halfway House
Malvern Books Blog
by Tracey
5M ago
The Halfway House by Guillermo Rosales, translated by Anna Kushnerby JP Poole Guillermo Rosales’s The Halfway House is a brilliant and stark portrait of what it’s like to live in multiple rings of exile, not unlike Dante’s multiple rings of hell. When the novel’s protagonist, William Figueras, arrives in Miami, his relatives expect to embrace a young Cuban exile ready to make it big in America. Instead, they lock eyes with someone they barely recognize—a rail thin stranger who hurls insults at them through missing teeth and is suffering from paranoia. Figueras is admitted to a psychiatric ..read more
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Staff Picks: How to Start Writing (and When to Stop): Advice for Authors
Malvern Books Blog
by Tracey
5M ago
How to Start Writing (and When to Stop): Advice for Authors by Wisława Szymborska, translated from the Polish by Clare Cavanagh by JP Poole When it comes to crushing a writer’s literary aspirations, Wisława Szymborska is a skilled practitioner; when she brings the hammer down it lands with a clang and stylistic flair. In 1968, Szymborska and another novelist started the Literary Mailbox, an advice column published in the Krakow-based journal Literary Life. Letters from novice writers poured in. Not wanting to reveal her gender, Szymborska responded in the first person plural. How to Start Writ ..read more
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Staff Picks: Shirley Chisholm, The Last Interview
Malvern Books Blog
by Tracey
5M ago
Shirley Chisholm: The Last Interview by JP Poole Before I talk about how inspiring Shirley Chisholm is, how her impact can be felt today (at this very moment), I should tell you that once a man called her “a little schoolteacher.” Now, during her political career she had been called a lot of things, much worse, but “little” she was not. In fact, even when she was little, growing up in Barbados, she was a leader amongst her peers and watchful of her younger sisters. Her mother recounted that at age three, Chisholm gathered the six- and seven-year-olds in the neighborhood, and shouted “Listen to ..read more
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