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Objects and Empathy
by Arthur Saltzman

Price: $16.00
256 pages
trade paper
ISBN: 0922811490
LCCN #: 2001030175

This collection of creative nonfiction takes advantage of the limber, liberal implications of its genre. Its methods range from memoir to speculative essay to satirical sketch, and its subjects from human foibles to the ambiguities of fate. Although many of the incidents contained in the book are sobering—fragility, mortality, and loss are prominent concerns—its impulses are lyrical, its style playful. Humor is the guiding spirit—humor as consolation, as communion, as lasting resonance, as last resort.

“Each piece coalesces to reveal a keen mind in love with words.… Many of these essays deploy riskily mellifluous language; they all ring personal, fervent and true.”—Publishers Weekly

“Saltzman reveals a deft touch at eliciting the revelations that can reside in the space where fact and fiction intertwine. Alternately wise and wry, elegiac and enlivening.”—ForeWord

Saltzman, the author of six studies on contemporary American fiction, here eschews literary criticism in favor of essays that are personal and wide-ranging in subject matter. Saltzman uses literary references (to Beckett, Eliot, and many modern poets and novelists) as well as nonliterary citations to such events as the first moon landing to add texture and haunting echoes to the themes of his essays.—Library Journal

“Objects and Empathy is wondrous.”—Dave Wood’s Book Report

Martin Amis observes that style ‘is not something grappled on to regular prose; it is intrinsic to perception.’ Where these essays succeed they marry the celebration of language with acuity.… The collection is, like the work Saltzman esteems most, risky, adventurous, inquisitive, and challenging.—Hyde Park Review of Books

 


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