Tuesday, June 25, 2019

Eight top books set over twenty-four hours

Alex Clark writes for the Guardian and the Observer. Two of her best books set over twenty-hours:
James Joyce’s Ulysses is one of the 20th century’s most celebrated examples of such a novel, the richness of its evocation of a day in Dublin giving rise to last week’s Bloomsday. And this week there was “Dallowday”, on which fans of Virginia Woolf mark the mid-June setting of her 1925 novel, Mrs Dalloway. At its start, Clarissa Dalloway sets out to buy flowers, accompanied by her perpetual sense “of being out, out, far out to sea and alone; she always had the feeling that it was very, very dangerous to live even one day”; at its close, she has returned home to host her party, and to reflect on her kinship with the young war veteran Septimus Smith as “the clock was striking”.
Read about another entry on the list.

Ulysses is on Tom McCarthy's lit of six favorite books about nothing, Alice-Azania Jarvis's reading list on grammar, George Vecsey's list of six favorite books, Nina MacLaughlin's top ten list of dirty old (literary) men, John Mullan's lists of the ten of the best parodies, ten of the best Hamlets in literature, ten of the best visits to the lavatory, and ten of the best vegetables in literature. It appears on Frank Delaney's top ten list of Irish novels and five best list of books about Ireland.

Mrs. Dalloway also appears on Mary Gordon's ten favorite books list, Andrew O'Hagan's six favorite books list, Elizabeth Strout's six favorite books list, Juan Gabriel Vásquez's six favorite books list, Becky Ferreira's list of seven of the best fictional depictions of female friendship, Rebecca Jane Stokes's list of seven favorite fictional shopaholics, Suzette Field's top 10 list of literary party hosts, Jennie Rooney's top ten list of women travelers in fiction, John Mullan's list of ten of the best prime ministers in fiction, and among Michael Cunningham's 5 most important books, Dani Shapiro's 10 favorite books, and Kate Walbert's best books.

--Marshal Zeringue