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13 Ways of Looking at the Novel
13 Ways of Looking at the Novel | Jane Smiley
13 posts | 5 read | 2 reading | 26 to read
Pulitzer Prize winner and bestselling novelist Jane Smiley celebrates the noveland takes us on an exhilarating tour through one hundred of themin this seductive and immensely rewarding literary tribute. In her inimitable styleexuberant, candid, opinionatedSmiley explores the power of the novel, looking at its history and variety, its cultural impact, and just how it works its magic. She invites us behind the scenes of novel-writing, sharing her own habits and spilling the secrets of her craft. And she offers priceless advice to aspiring authors. As she works her way through one hundred novelsfrom classics such as the thousand-year-old Tale of Genji to recent fiction by Zadie Smith and Alice Munroshe infects us anew with the passion for reading that is the governing spirit of this gift to book lovers everywhere. From the Trade Paperback edition.
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Today is one of those days where reading is the only perfect fit. From these words👆🏽, I gather that Jane Smiley knows what‘s up!

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IamIamIam 👏👏👏 Perfect!! 2y
UwannaPublishme 🙌🏻🙌🏻🙌🏻 2y
Ubookquitous Love Jane! Brilliant writer 2y
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Gogobooks This is true of me: I find it a little weird. Yet, anything benignly comforting is good🙂 2y
Nute @Ubookquitous Agree!🙂 2y
Nute @Gogobooks Yes! A crazy, hectic and stressful day at work quite often spurs a spontaneous trip to the bookstore. Many times I don‘t make a purchase. It‘s just the environment...the sight and smell of books provides relief and comfort.🙂 2y
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I first read this in April & immediately knew that it would end up being one of my favorites of the year. I have decided to reread Smiley's elegant history/thoroughly engaging analysis of the novel. The art form I #cherish above all others.
#Movember @Cinfhen

Cinfhen So, I must #Stack because your review was so persuasive 3y
vivastory @Cinfhen I hope you love it! 3y
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Smiley's title is based on Wallace Stevens' haiku-like, influential 1954 poem, "Thirteen Ways of Looking at a Blackbird." Stevens dealt in the realm of poetry (& insurance); Smiley is concerned with the novel, which she defines as: a lengthy, written, prose narrative, with a protagonist. Smiley was working on a rough draft of her novel, "Good Faith" when 9/11 happened. She writes that the events left her stunned & unable to work on her novel. ?

vivastory In order to make sense of what had happened & move forward she began writing the tagged book. The first one half, 280 pages, of "13 ways" are essays concerning the novel, while the second half is comprised of mini-essays of 100 books that she calls congenial & uncongenial, but all worth the effort. Her list spans from The Tale of Genji to Egan's Look at Me. Smiley meant for the second half to be dipped into randomly, not read straight through ? 4y
vivastory "In search of a cohesive argument." I took her advice on the second half; but I was positively mesmerized & enraptured by the first half. In an informed, & accessible, manner, Smiley details the historical & democratic origins of the novel. The complexities & the irreducibility of the novel as an art form are clearly & passionately articulated. Declining novel sales are noted at one point, especially amongst male readers.? 4y
vivastory However, this is not a defense of the novel, rather it is a celebration of what makes novels unique as well as the perennial relevance & perspective that classics afford the contemporary reader. 4y
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SharonGoforth I read this when it first came out and loved it! I still dip into it every now and then. That‘s one I should definitely re-read! 4y
vivastory @SharonGoforth I will definitely be revisiting it. I highlighted a lot of passages. I was even fascinated by her insights in the chapters that were offering advice to aspiring novelists. I imagine I'll be gifting this frequently. 4y
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Kimberlone I picked up this book a few months ago, and your posts have really been making me want to read it soon! 4y
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I love Wuthering Heights, but this is pretty spot-on.

Leftcoastzen Love this! 4y
Theaelizabet How true. 4y
cobwebmoth Yep. 4y
sprainedbrain Very true... I only read it as an adult, and Heathcliff does nothing for me. 4y
rohit-sawant Accurate! 4y
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Only 23 pages in, but I'm loving this one so far. A lot of passages I've marked. Also, the bright spring colors are perfect after a difficult winter!

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On writing, reading, and novel approaches 📖📝🔍

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Every time I dip into this, I find just what I'm looking for. Jane, you rock.

Lcsmcat ❤️ Jane Smiley! 6y
peggyriley She is so wise! 6y
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"Many people, myself among them, feel better at the mere sight of a book."

Dear Devoted Readers,
We have a favor to ask. If you listen to our podcast, would you please write us a review on iTunes? It would greatly help other book lovers find us and, hopefully, make their TBR stacks happy. Many thanks in advance.
?Love, Kendra & Autumn (& Dylan)

P.S. Be sure to check back tomorrow for an exclusive Litsy giveaway!


Tanzy13 🐶 6y
slategreyskies I'd never heard of your podcast before this post. Just subscribed! Once I listen to an episode, I'll leave you a review! ❤️ 6y
thereadingwomen @slategreyskies thank you! Enjoy! 😊 6y
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KellyMuser I'm glad you posted this. I just subscribed! 6y
Michelle_mck I reviewed you a few months back in the Australian iTunes Store not sure if that helps 6y
thereadingwomen @KellyMuser Thank you for subscribing! 6y
thereadingwomen @Michelle_mck Thank you for your support! We appreciate it. 😄 6y
80 likes7 comments
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#readjanuary #readingequipment - my at home set-up. Book (ebook, print book, or Audio) iPad with tracking timers, Goodreads, Litsy,audible app, etc ) book rest, pillow, recliner, blanket, light (window or lamp) headphones (if others are home).

tpixie Home sweet home! 🏡 6y
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“Many people, myself among them, feel better at the mere sight of a book"

So much truth in this bookish quote. All my cares and worries melt away at the first step and inhalation entering a bookstore.
#24in48 #readathon #bookishquote

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