Cast in Doubt
Renata Adler's novels ruminate on the ephemera, awkward occurrences, and horrors of everyday life
Speedboat (Nyrb Classics)
by Renata Adler
$14.00 List Price
RENATA ADLER’S NEWLY REISSUED NOVELS, Speedboat (1976) and Pitch Dark (1983), consist of anecdotes, vignettes, jokes, aphorisms, epigrammatic asides, and longer passages of prose—eclectic inventories of consciousness. Their immediate effect is that of a flea market in Samarqand or Ouagadougou, where the items on display (vintage clothes, military decorations, photo albums, broken appliances) are fractionally different enough, in style and provenance, from their cousins at the local swap meet to look like artifacts of an alternate universe. Adler’s eye and ear for the peculiar are unmatched in American letters.
Adler herself is regarded as peculiar in literary circles; her reluctance to publish anything is almost as legendary as Fran Lebowitz’s writing block. At a more prolific time, Adler wrote often, mainly
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