Tuesday, November 13, 2012, 7pm, Music Building, $20
e j u &
a m e s o o d o l e
with Leonard Lopate
is the PEN/Hemingway Award-winning author of the novel Open City. He is also a photographer, as well as an historian of early Netherlandish art. Time Magazine has said: “Cole has earned flattering comparisons to literary heavyweights like J.M. Coetzee, W.G. Sebald and Henry James, but Open City merits higher praise: it’s a profoundly original work…. A powerful and unnerving inquiry into the human soul.” The New York Times Book Review has said: “[Open City is] an indelible debut novel… a compassionate and masterly work.” James Wood, writing in The New Yorker, has said: “[Open City is] beautiful, subtle, and finally, original.” The New Republic has said: “Reminiscent of the works of W.G. Sebald, this dreamy, incantatory debut [Open City] was the most beautiful novel I read this year—the kind of book that remains on your nightstand long after you finish so that you can continue dipping in occasionally as a nighttime consolation.” The Economist has said: “In the precision with which Mr. Cole chooses words or phrases he is not unlike Gustave Flaubert.” The Globe and Mail has said: “Cole writes beautifully; his protagonist is unique; and his novel, utterly thrilling.” Anthony Doerr has said: “Teju Cole may be a W.G. Sebald for the twenty-first century… [Open City is] gorgeous, crystalline…nothing less than a searing tour de force.”
is a book critic at The New Yorker, a recipient of the National Magazine Award, and the author of the books of nonfiction The Broken Estate, The Irresponsible Self, How Fiction Works, and, most recently, The Fun Stuff, which is forthcoming in the fall of 2012. He is also the author of the novel The Book Against God. Cynthia Ozick has said of Mr. Wood: “He is our best critic; he thinks with a sublime ferocity. One can. . .be swept away by his exactitude, his penetration, the remarkable range of his reading, the unsurpassable (and sometimes unsettling) force of his autonomous prose; above all, by his stringent originality.” The New York Observer has said: “Let’s drop the qualifiers and say it loud and clear: [James Wood] is the best. [He] is a blessing to the culture…recklessly committed to literature and brave enough to risk ridicule by pushing every thought to the limit…. Heroically ambitious and infectiously high-minded, [Wood’s work] is also…genuinely enjoyable… [This] kind of reading is how criticism justifies its existence.” The Times Literary Supplement has said: “We have very few critics…who can remind us that talking about literature is part of what literature is about, and talking about it with passion, precision, and out of a rich store of reading is a rare and precious gift: it is good for all of us that James Wood has it and we have James Wood.” The Los Angeles Times has said: “Wood is among the few contemporary writers of great consequence.” The New York Review of Books has described Mr. Wood as “perhaps the strongest, and strangest, literary critic we have.”
In addition to reading from their work, Teju Cole and James Wood will be interviewed by Leonard Lopate.
photo of James Wood: Miriam Berkley