An astute and sensitive translation brings this charming work to light for American audiences.

AUTONAUTS OF THE COSMOROUTE

A TIMELESS VOYAGE FROM PARIS TO MARSEILLES

New translation of a whimsical 20th-century travelogue.

In 1982, eminent Argentinean writer Cortázar (Hopscotch, 1963, etc.) embarked on a 33-day journey with wife Dunlop. Their plan? To travel the autoroute from Paris to Marseille, a distance usually covered in a single day, in a beloved red VW camper van nicknamed Fafner, or “Dragon.” They vowed not to leave the autoroute until they reached their destination; to take advantage of motels, restaurants or gas station shops en route; and to stop twice a day, camping at every second rest stop. Supplies included books, typewriters and a camera—careful, tongue-in-cheek scientific notes were taken with the aim of completing a book by the end of their journey. The couple were anti-explorers in a mundane landscape, slowing down a journey that had been modernized and sped up. What emerges from their trip is a playful, surprisingly intimate account of a marriage in all its ranging vicissitudes. Using their private pet names for each other throughout, el Lobo (Cortázar, the wolf) and la Osita (Dunlop, little bear) invite you into their singular world of exaggerated descriptions and inside jokes with double meanings. Additionally, the authors receive imaginary visits from Polanco and Calac, characters who first appeared in Cortázar’s long out-of-print 62: A Model Kit. Photographs and sketches document the voyage, a collaboration between two artists very much in love. The tenderness at the core of their relationship shines through, making it all the more heartbreaking to read the postscript written by Cortázar the following winter, which informs the reader that Dunlop succumbed to an unnamed illness mere months after they finished their journey. He died 15 months later, and what began as a romping amusement is transformed into a tribute to their passionate marriage.

An astute and sensitive translation brings this charming work to light for American audiences.

Pub Date: Dec. 1, 2007

ISBN: 978-0-9793330-0-2

Page Count: 360

Publisher: Archipelago

Review Posted Online: May 20, 2010

Kirkus Reviews Issue: Oct. 1, 2007

Did you like this book?

No Comments Yet

Stricter than, say, Bergen Evans or W3 ("disinterested" means impartial — period), Strunk is in the last analysis...

THE ELEMENTS OF STYLE

50TH ANNIVERSARY EDITION

Privately published by Strunk of Cornell in 1918 and revised by his student E. B. White in 1959, that "little book" is back again with more White updatings.

Stricter than, say, Bergen Evans or W3 ("disinterested" means impartial — period), Strunk is in the last analysis (whoops — "A bankrupt expression") a unique guide (which means "without like or equal").

Pub Date: May 15, 1972

ISBN: 0205632645

Page Count: 105

Publisher: Macmillan

Review Posted Online: Oct. 28, 2011

Kirkus Reviews Issue: May 1, 1972

Did you like this book?

WHAT A WONDERFUL WORLD

A LIFETIME OF RECORDINGS

Noted jazz and pop record producer Thiele offers a chatty autobiography. Aided by record-business colleague Golden, Thiele traces his career from his start as a ``pubescent, novice jazz record producer'' in the 1940s through the '50s, when he headed Coral, Dot, and Roulette Records, and the '60s, when he worked for ABC and ran the famous Impulse! jazz label. At Coral, Thiele championed the work of ``hillbilly'' singer Buddy Holly, although the only sessions he produced with Holly were marred by saccharine strings. The producer specialized in more mainstream popsters like the irrepressibly perky Teresa Brewer (who later became his fourth wife) and the bubble-machine muzak-meister Lawrence Welk. At Dot, Thiele was instrumental in recording Jack Kerouac's famous beat- generation ramblings to jazz accompaniment (recordings that Dot's president found ``pornographic''), while also overseeing a steady stream of pop hits. He then moved to the Mafia-controlled Roulette label, where he observed the ``silk-suited, pinky-ringed'' entourage who frequented the label's offices. Incredibly, however, Thiele remembers the famously hard-nosed Morris Levy, who ran the label and was eventually convicted of extortion, as ``one of the kindest, most warm-hearted, and classiest music men I have ever known.'' At ABC/Impulse!, Thiele oversaw the classic recordings of John Coltrane, although he is the first to admit that Coltrane essentially produced his own sessions. Like many producers of the day, Thiele participated in the ownership of publishing rights to some of the songs he recorded; he makes no apology for this practice, which he calls ``entirely appropriate and without any ethical conflicts.'' A pleasant, if not exactly riveting, memoir that will be of most interest to those with a thirst for cocktail-hour stories of the record biz. (25 halftones, not seen)

Pub Date: May 1, 1995

ISBN: 0-19-508629-4

Page Count: 224

Publisher: Oxford Univ.

Review Posted Online: May 20, 2010

Kirkus Reviews Issue: March 1, 1995

Did you like this book?

more