Tuesday, June 24, 2008
Sleepless Nights by Elizabeth Hardwick
This slim collage novel of an old woman's thoughts is full of gems I'd like to pull out of my pocket and study at will (in other words, I wish I could memorize paragraphs). It's really more like a portrait gallery than a novel--pictures line up next to each other in a deliberate order but placing it into a narrative is really up to the reader--like glimpsing someone else's consciousness without them organizing it first. A form that fits the subject well. It's also a novel that assumes a high level of cultural knowledge--no explanations but lots of references.