Kevin Recommends

The Ghosts of Birds Cover Image
ISBN: 9780811226189
Availability: On Our Shelves Now
Published: New Directions Publishing Corporation - October 11th, 2016

The essays of Eliot Weinberger are typically not what one thinks of when one thinks "essay". He is a master of taking the traditional essay form and turning it on its head to great effect.

The first section of this book collects his essays that make up AN ELEMENTAL THING. Part prose, part poetry, these essays explore the mystical and ethereal. With great pith, Weinberger explores the mythologies, elements, and histories of humankind. His writing is all at once simple and ornate, giving the reader a sense of cosmic moodiness and curiosity.

The second half of the book collects Weinberger's more traditional essays. A definite highlight is his scathing review of George W. Bush's memoir Decision Points.

I can not recommend this collection enough. Beautifully written, witty, and wry, these essays are sure to imbue the reader with an understanding of human history unlike anything I've ever read.

Chess Story Cover Image
By Stefan Zweig, Joel Rotenberg (Translator), Peter Gay (Introduction by)
ISBN: 9781590171691
Availability: Not On Our Shelves. Usually arrives in 1-5 Days
Published: New York Review of Books - December 9th, 2005

This novella packs a punch. In only eighty pages, Zweig crafts a compelling and grand tale about the Royal Game — not to mention some of the most romantic descriptions of chess I've ever read. Part allegory, part philosophy, the contest on the board soon represents the ways in which we as humans vie for understanding and purpose. A powerful psychological drama that will leave the reader reeling.