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Inner Workings


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A collection of essays on literature by one of the world's finest writers: a must read.

About the Author

J.M. Coetzee's work includes Waiting for the Barbarians, Life & Times of Michael K, Boyhood, Youth, Disgrace, Summertime and The Childhood of Jesus. He was the first author to win the Booker Prize twice and was awarded the Nobel Prize for Literature in 2003.


Written in Coetzee's (Disgrace) spare yet precise style, these essays cover a wide range of literature. His subjects, both European and American writers, range from Walt Whitman to Nadine Gordimer. Throughout, Coetzee demonstrates a comfortable grasp of the authors' body of work, their life and era, and other critical commentary surrounding their work. This command of his material blends well with the scrupulous rigor with which he examines the authors' meaning and intent. Coetzee's sage analysis is accompanied by concise plot summaries of relevant works, a useful feature for those unfamiliar with all the writings of the author in question. This collection would therefore be useful both to those studying the subjects of his essays and to those wishing for an introduction to the authors. Furthermore, as noted in Derek Attridge's (J.M. Coetzee and the Ethics of Reading) introduction, the essays allow oblique insights into Coetzee's own well-rewarded body of literature and will thus also be positively received by established followers of his fiction writing. Suited to academic and larger public libraries. [See Prepub Alert, LJ 3/15/07.]--Rebecca Bollen Manalac, Sydney, Australia Copyright 2007 Reed Business Information.

"The essays here are welcoming, informative, readable, lucid, plain, purged of jargon... Coetzee is a critic of unbiddable integrity" * Daily Telegraph *
"Literary criticism of the highest order...will be read and valued by anyone interested in the inner workings of literature for decades to come" * Independent *
" impeccable stylist" * Spectator *
"Fans will relish his precise, restrained style of literary criticism...communicating Coetzee's passion for literature" * New Statesman *
"Coetzee the critic is every bit as good as Coetzee the novelist." * Irish Times *

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