Friday, October 31, 2014

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NY1 teams with contributors from The New York Times, Wall Street Journal, New York Magazine, Slate.com and Essence Magazine to review the latest books and book-related trends.

The Book Reader: "The Address Book," "Woman's World"

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TWC News: The Book Reader: "The Address Book," "Woman's World"
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Andrew Losowsky of The Huffington Post reports for NY1 on newly released book titles and the world of publishing in "The Book Reader."

If you ever lose anything, just hope that the French artist Sophie Calle doesn't find it.

In 1983, she found an address book on a sidewalk in Paris. She proceeded to contact every person listed inside. She asked each of them to describe the address book's owner, a man called Pierre.

The result, now published as a book called "The Address Book," is fascinating and strange. It was finally released in English last year, after the death of Pierre, in a beautiful small format reminiscent of a real address book. This is a series of profiles and of confessions, a game and an intrusion, a reflection on who we know and who does, and doesn't, know us.

At a time when privacy is such a hot topic, "The Address Book" is an unsettling and fascinating read. It's out now from Siglio Press.

Graham Rawle also writes using things that he finds. For his book "Woman's World," he used more than 40,000 text fragments cut out from women's magazines of the 1960s. Rawle pieced them together, sometimes a word, other times a complete sentence, to create a strange pulp noir set in suburban England. The result is bizarre and beautiful, and works far better than it should.

Thanks to the source material, unusual metaphors and descriptions emerge as part of this dark satire about society's construction of womanhood and femininity. Published five years ago by Counterpoint, this remarkable book is well worth tracking down. You'll never read anything like it.

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