NEW COLLECTED POEMS

Robert Graves turned 81-years-old this year. Now, in the heart of a prolonged critical reaction against his psychoanalytical investigations, his literary commentary and mythmaking, his Collected Poems are being published in America for the first time. The present volume contains all the poetry Graves has authorized for publication in his nearly 60 years of writing. The early Georgian poems are here, humorous, charming, unpretentious; and the amatory nursery rhymes and country sketches, written, Graves has said, to subdue memories of the First World War. Then follow anti-Romantic poems and the ironic, purified, and polished jewels of the years Graves spent with Laura Riding; the more familiar elaborations on the myth of the White Goddess; and a recent, somewhat contradictory preoccupation with the goddess of wisdom. But most of ali, here is a poet who searched valiantly for a breadth of imagery and form to contain his central theme of love; it's only regrettable that a more handsome volume is not in the offing. But this does supply a fine; brief biographical introduction by lames McKinley.

Pub Date: Nov. 5, 1976

ISBN: 0385115075

Page Count: 496

Publisher: Doubleday

Review Posted Online: May 17, 2012

Kirkus Reviews Issue: Nov. 1, 1976

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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

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Analyzing his craft, a careful craftsman urges with Thoreauvian conviction that writers should simplify, simplify, simplify.

SEVERAL SHORT SENTENCES ABOUT WRITING

New York Times columnist and editorial board member delivers a slim book for aspiring writers, offering saws and sense, wisdom and waggery, biases and biting sarcasm.

Klinkenborg (Timothy; or, Notes of an Abject Reptile, 2006), who’s taught for decades, endeavors to keep things simple in his prose, and he urges other writers to do the same. (Note: He despises abuses of the word as, as he continually reminds readers.) In the early sections, the author ignores traditional paragraphing so that the text resembles a long free-verse poem. He urges readers to use short, clear sentences and to make sure each one is healthy before moving on; notes that it’s acceptable to start sentences with and and but; sees benefits in diagramming sentences; stresses that all writing is revision; periodically blasts the formulaic writing that many (most?) students learn in school; argues that knowing where you’re headed before you begin might be good for a vacation, but not for a piece of writing; and believes that writers must trust readers more, and trust themselves. Most of Klinkenborg’s advice is neither radical nor especially profound (“Turn to the poets. / Learn from them”), and the text suffers from a corrosive fallacy: that if his strategies work for him they will work for all. The final fifth of the text includes some passages from writers he admires (McPhee, Oates, Cheever) and some of his students’ awkward sentences, which he treats analytically but sometimes with a surprising sarcasm that veers near meanness. He includes examples of students’ dangling modifiers, malapropisms, errors of pronoun agreement, wordiness and other mistakes.

Analyzing his craft, a careful craftsman urges with Thoreauvian conviction that writers should simplify, simplify, simplify.

Pub Date: Aug. 7, 2012

ISBN: 978-0-307-26634-7

Page Count: 224

Publisher: Knopf

Review Posted Online: May 14, 2012

Kirkus Reviews Issue: June 15, 2012

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