Saturday, August 7, 2010

Writers I Recommend: A Baker's Dozen. Part 2

5. Barry Hannah
Mentor, role model, pedal-to-the-metal writer. Best prose style of any American fiction writer I know. He was at his most exhilarating and spectacular in short stories: might I recommend the volume Airships? I guarantee you will be left breathless.

6. James Hillman
Radical Jungian whose way of seeing the world makes radical sense. Dense writing, but thinking that is heavy and true. Take a look at Healing Fiction for starters, but also Revisioning Psychology and Dream and the Underworld. Has helped me understand things in a way that incorporates reason, imagination, and experience.

7. Clarice Lispector
First-rate dying-young Brazilian writer. If you like Angela Carter with less of a polemical edge, you might enjoy Lispector. The Passion According to G.H. is the book; an amazing short story that could serve as an introduction is "The Smallest Woman in the World".

8. Patrick McGinley
Irish mystery writer who is a superb, compelling story-teller. Suspense, yes, and creepy, but also funny as hell. Trick of the Ga Bolga is excellent, as are Foggage and Bogmail.

9. Stephen Mitchell
Yes, the translator. Read his introductions, especially to his translations of Job and Genesis. Also of Rilke and Tao Te Ching. It's what happens when you bring your own poetry and knowledge to bear on the imagination and sensibility of someone else--how brilliant you can be when you step outside yourself.

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