Monday, November 28, 2011

Learning to Celebrate Life: Ray Robertson makes Globe Top 100, reviewed in The Gazette

Well, the Globe's Best 100 book list came out on Friday, and we're proud to announce that both Ray Robertson's Why Not? and Clark Blaise's The Meagre Tarmac ranked among them. What else? Ian McGillis of the Montreal Gazette gave Ray's book a thoughtful going-over, comparing it to Sarah Bakewell's NBCC Award-winning How to Live, and describing the part Ray's book plays in the "mini revival" of "the humanist essay with practical application."

Here's a taste:

"The book as a whole is ... heartfelt, funny, rigorous, practical without ever being preachy. Robertson has the born essayist's way with an aphorism ('There's no age more conformist than youth'), and his catholic range is contagious: when he pulls in Lord Byron and Jimmie Rodgers as back-to-back sources, he not only evinces no strain, he makes you think of a romantic poet and a yodelling country singer as natural soul brothers. Two of the longest quotes in the book appear close together: One is from Baudelaire, the other a mock-news piece on teenage masturbation from the The Onion, and by the time we reach them, Robertson has us thinking of them as equally worthy sources of wisdom."

For the rest of the review, check out the Gazette online.

And hey! If you're anywhere near Burlington tomorrow, you should check Ray out as he reads for the Book and Author Series.
LaSalle Park Pavilion,
50 North Shore Blvd.,
9:30 AM.

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