Monday, July 22, 2013

Ten notable books based on other books

Álvaro Enrigue's story collection Hypothermia explores identity and isolation through the eyes of garbage collectors, professors, and outcasts. It's also loosely based on Dante's Inferno. For Publishers Weekly, Enrigue tagged ten "great literary works which have set out to modify our reading of other, earlier ones," including:
Flaubert's Parrot by Julian Barnes - As interesting as the intersection of experience and reading found between Madame Bovary and Don Quixote is the fact that in the late 20th Century an English writer thought that Mrs. Bovary, who was Don Quixote, who was Flaubert, was, also, Julian Barnes. Flaubert’s Parrot is an amphibious book in which what appears to be a personal essay about Flaubertian writing is gradually, delicately transformed into an extremely sad novel in which the differences between character, author, and narrator are less clear than they appear at first glance.
Read about another novel on the list.

Also see John Mullan's list of ten of the best twice-told tales.

--Marshal Zeringue