Three Books

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Don Quixote by Kathy Acker. Grove Press trade paperback, 1986. Cover design by Neil Stuart. Cover illustration by Catherine Denvir.

A messy punkpostmodern cartoon, a big long jazz howl at the moon.

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The Egghead Republic by Arno Schmidt; English translation by Michael Horowitz. Marion Boyars trade paperback, 1982. Cover design by Imre Reiner, who likely drew the illustration (although he is not explicitly credited).

I found the first 50 pages utterly exhausting, and there were 100 more. I tried. The cover designer Imre Reiner is most famous for his font designs, but he also illustrated many many books, including a 1941 edition of Cervantes’ Don Quixote.

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Sanatorium under the Sign of the Hourglass by Bruno Schulz; English translation by Celina Wieniewska. Cover design by Neil Stuart. Cover illustration by Bruno Schultz. (The novel includes thirty black and white illustrations by Schultz.)

A gross, surreal, dispiriting nightmare. I recall “enjoying” it.

3 thoughts on “Three Books”

  1. I think the translation cannot be good. The German title is Die Gelehrtenrepublik and an allusion to Klopstock’s Die deutsche Gelehrtenrepublik. To give the English translation the title The Egghead Republic is a joke, not a good one.

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  2. Where else is the news so great today? Kathy Acker & Bruno Schulz … how he would have smiled and thought-up a few illustrations for his literary-god-daughter. My thanks for tip-off re Arno Schmidt … from one who thought he knew everyone in the canon.

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