November’s “Hot” Read: City On Fire by Garth Risk Hallberg
City On Fire – an “immersive, exuberant, boundary-vaulting novel” published in October of this year – is the debut novel of Garth Risk Hallberg, an American novelist born in Louisiana who grew up in North Carolina and currently lives in New York with his wife and children.
Here’s what people are saying:
“Locating the best of times within the worst of times is no mean trick, especially in a historical novel where the history is recent enough that many readers remember firsthand just how bad those times were. That’s the delicate and ultimately moving balancing act that Garth Risk Hallberg pulls off in ‘City on Fire,’ his Dickens-size descent into New York City circa 1976-77”….read more from the New York Times.
“‘The more we’re told we’re becoming readers of blogs, of texts, of tweets,’ Garth Risk Hallberg wrote in an online essay in 2010, ‘the more committing to a big book feels like an act of resistance.’ Among the standard bearers of a miniboom in maximization, he named perennial favorites David Foster Wallace, whose mega-novel ‘Infinite Jest’ sports a four-figure page count, and Jonathan Franzen, who had just published ‘Freedom’ and this year completed a hat-trick of big books with ‘Purity.’ Mr. Hallberg has now joined the movement by offering up a novel of more than 900 pages”…read more from the Wall Street Journal.
“Autumn’s Last Light”
Seize the season’s last light –
A bouquet of swirling
Golden fiery hues…
And baubles of berries,
Dangling bright – ruby red
Infuse me with autumn’s warm flame –
A liquid harvest of
The roaring fire of time
Burn the dark moments
Of this closing year.