Thoroughly Modern Mary

From the March 2013 Print Edition

The Testament of Mary by Colm Tóibín Scribner, 81 pages, $19.99 All told, Mary utters only two hundred words in the Bible. We hear from her three times in Luke, at the Annunciation and the Visitation, and when she remonstrates with the twelve-year-old Jesus after he has gone missing in the . . . . Continue Reading »

On Two Moons and a Prayer

From the April 2012 Print Edition

1Q84 ? by Haruki Murakami, translated by Jay Rubin and Philip Gabriel? Knopf, 944 pages, $30.50 Much to my surprise, given the author’s reputation, I began to care about the main characters of Japanese novelist Haruki Murakami’s new epic, 1Q84 . They are a young man and a young woman who, . . . . Continue Reading »

Taxing Boredom

From the October 2011 Print Edition

The Pale King by David foster Wallace Little, Brown, 548 pages, $27.99 It’s not often that suicidal postmodern novelists and conservative public-policy intellectuals share each other’s concerns about the troubling conditions of contemporary American life. This seemed to be the case in . . . . Continue Reading »

The Life of Pi

From the May 2003 Print Edition

Good news came from across the Atlantic late last year. England’s most prestigious literary award”the Booker Prize”had been awarded to a work that made the following assertion on its inside cover: “This is a novel of such rare and wondrous storytelling that it may, as one . . . . Continue Reading »