All the Books Blake Butler Read This Year
A Day in the Strait by Emmanuel Hocquard

The Obscene Madame D by Hilda Hilst
A close friend of one of my favorites, Clarice Lispector, Hilst isn’t a far cry from the fragmentary, mutative mindset of that relation. This brief 57-page meta-monologue is stuffed to the gills with ideas of madness from a mind you actually want to see run rampant. It gushes in a somehow more intimate and raving Beckett-ian mode. I wish there were a shitload of little shattering novellas like this everywhere, available in gas stations, as a drug. 
The Ruined Map by Kobo Abe
Prostitution by Pierre Guyotat
The Use of Speech by Nathalie Sarraute
The Box Man by Kobo Abe
Reflections by Mark Insingel
The Moon’s Jaw by Rauan Klassnik
Tenth of December by George Saunders
Red Doc > by Anne Carson
Three by Ann Quin
The Virgin Suicides by Jeffrey Eugenides
Castle to Castle by Louis-Ferdinand Céline

Taipei by Tao Lin
No disappointment after the hype for this new novel from someone whom I’ve always looked to as an icon just ahead of the curve. Taipei takes everything Tao Lin was always astounding at—intricately bizarre observations of social contexts and the moment-to-moment shades of one’s emotions—to a newly effective depth. The book holds nothing back, fusing Wallace-sized sentence structures with Tao’s masterful minimalism, while somehow managing to infuse the mutative energy of the internet in what may end up being the most open look at the inner workings of a young person in whatever social era we’re currently trapped in.  
The Face of Another by Kobo Abe
Read the whole list

All the Books Blake Butler Read This Year

A Day in the Strait by Emmanuel Hocquard

The Obscene Madame D by Hilda Hilst

A close friend of one of my favorites, Clarice Lispector, Hilst isn’t a far cry from the fragmentary, mutative mindset of that relation. This brief 57-page meta-monologue is stuffed to the gills with ideas of madness from a mind you actually want to see run rampant. It gushes in a somehow more intimate and raving Beckett-ian mode. I wish there were a shitload of little shattering novellas like this everywhere, available in gas stations, as a drug. 

The Ruined Map by Kobo Abe

Prostitution by Pierre Guyotat

The Use of Speech by Nathalie Sarraute

The Box Man by Kobo Abe

Reflections by Mark Insingel

The Moon’s Jaw by Rauan Klassnik

Tenth of December by George Saunders

Red Doc > by Anne Carson

Three by Ann Quin

The Virgin Suicides by Jeffrey Eugenides

Castle to Castle by Louis-Ferdinand Céline

Taipei by Tao Lin

No disappointment after the hype for this new novel from someone whom I’ve always looked to as an icon just ahead of the curve. Taipei takes everything Tao Lin was always astounding at—intricately bizarre observations of social contexts and the moment-to-moment shades of one’s emotions—to a newly effective depth. The book holds nothing back, fusing Wallace-sized sentence structures with Tao’s masterful minimalism, while somehow managing to infuse the mutative energy of the internet in what may end up being the most open look at the inner workings of a young person in whatever social era we’re currently trapped in.  

The Face of Another by Kobo Abe

Read the whole list

What’s It Like to Be Tumblr Famous? 
“How do you know if someone is kind of flirting with u thru Tumblr?” read an email forwarded to me by my friend group’s resident internet expert, about an acquaintance I’ll call “Heather.” Shortly thereafter Heather herself messaged me with a slew of questions so twee, we vow to share them only with each other and invisible audiences online.
Her email elaborated, “I have been rapidfire trading likes all day since I reblogged him on my Tumblr and now he’s following me.” I pause, my fingers poised over my keyboard, then respond, “so hip so dumb” and reassure her that “he prbly wants yr bod.” Hers is a problem meant to be as self-effacing as it is flattering: Hey, we’re 23.
When you’re 23 and you’re online, you speak in other people’s voices. Heather’s coquettishness on Gchat and Tumblr is a parody of girlishness, amplified through feigned ignorance (“kind of flirting”) and corrupted through artful typos, ploce, and paroxysms of lucidity.
Continue

What’s It Like to Be Tumblr Famous? 

“How do you know if someone is kind of flirting with u thru Tumblr?” read an email forwarded to me by my friend group’s resident internet expert, about an acquaintance I’ll call “Heather.” Shortly thereafter Heather herself messaged me with a slew of questions so twee, we vow to share them only with each other and invisible audiences online.

Her email elaborated, “I have been rapidfire trading likes all day since I reblogged him on my Tumblr and now he’s following me.” I pause, my fingers poised over my keyboard, then respond, “so hip so dumb” and reassure her that “he prbly wants yr bod.” Hers is a problem meant to be as self-effacing as it is flattering: Hey, we’re 23.

When you’re 23 and you’re online, you speak in other people’s voices. Heather’s coquettishness on Gchat and Tumblr is a parody of girlishness, amplified through feigned ignorance (“kind of flirting”) and corrupted through artful typos, ploce, and paroxysms of lucidity.

Continue

motherboardtv:


Lost in a Loop: Tao Lin Chats with Andrew Bujalski About ‘Computer Chess’ and Other Things

motherboardtv:

Lost in a Loop: Tao Lin Chats with Andrew Bujalski About ‘Computer Chess’ and Other Things

Taipei Metro – Tao Lin’s iPhone Photos of Taipei
For the past couple of months, in celebration of last week’s release of Tao Lin’s latest novel, Taipei, we have been featuring a weekly selection of photos taken by the author during his recent trip to Taipei, Taiwan. While there, he took thousands of pictures with his iPhone, pictures which he has divided into albums titled things like “Taipei fashion,” “Taipei carbs,” “Taipei babies,” and “Taipei signs,” among others. In the final installment, Tao takes us inside Taipei’s extensive subway system.
Taipei is out now from Vintage and you can buy it here. To read an excerpt from the novel that we published a while back, click here.







Continue

Taipei Metro – Tao Lin’s iPhone Photos of Taipei

For the past couple of months, in celebration of last week’s release of Tao Lin’s latest novel, Taipei, we have been featuring a weekly selection of photos taken by the author during his recent trip to Taipei, Taiwan. While there, he took thousands of pictures with his iPhone, pictures which he has divided into albums titled things like “Taipei fashion,” “Taipei carbs,” “Taipei babies,” and “Taipei signs,” among others. In the final installment, Tao takes us inside Taipei’s extensive subway system.

Taipei is out now from Vintage and you can buy it here. To read an excerpt from the novel that we published a while back, click here.

Continue

Yesterday Tao told us via email that he has “confirmed probably 15 ppl plan on using it [the book launch] as a chance to get really fucked up” and “several ppl have planned to die from drugs that night also.” 
Tao Lin’s Book Launch Is Tonight in Brooklyn

Yesterday Tao told us via email that he has “confirmed probably 15 ppl plan on using it [the book launch] as a chance to get really fucked up” and “several ppl have planned to die from drugs that night also.” 

Tao Lin’s Book Launch Is Tonight in Brooklyn

Taipei Public Art
For the past few weeks, in celebration of the forthcoming release of Tao Lin’s latest novel, Taipei, we have been featuring a weekly selection of photos taken by the author during his recent trip to Taipei, Taiwan. While there, he took thousands of pictures with his iPhone, pictures which he has divided into albums titled things like “Taipei fashion,” “Taipei carbs,” “Taipei babies,” and “Taipei animals,” among others. In this selection, Tao shares some of the great public art around Taipei. He lets the photos speak for themselves.
Taipei will be released on June 4 from Vintage and is available for pre-order now. To read an early excerpt from the novel that we published yesterday, click here.



Continue

Taipei Public Art

For the past few weeks, in celebration of the forthcoming release of Tao Lin’s latest novel, Taipei, we have been featuring a weekly selection of photos taken by the author during his recent trip to Taipei, Taiwan. While there, he took thousands of pictures with his iPhone, pictures which he has divided into albums titled things like “Taipei fashion,” “Taipei carbs,” “Taipei babies,” and “Taipei animals,” among others. In this selection, Tao shares some of the great public art around Taipei. He lets the photos speak for themselves.

Taipei will be released on June 4 from Vintage and is available for pre-order now. To read an early excerpt from the novel that we published yesterday, click here.

Continue

It’s too big to load on tumblr/we can’t really figure it out, but you can view it here (and also read an excerpt).

An Excerpt from Tao Lin’s Taipei
Over the past month or so we’ve been publishing a whole slew of iPhone photos Tao Lin took on a recent visit to Taipei, the place from which his new novel takes its title. Pictures are all well and good (and we’ll be publishing another batch of them tomorrow), but to give you a real idea of what Tao’s new book is like, we thought it fitting to publish an excerpt. This is the first glimpse of Taipei Vintage has released, and it concerns the main character, Paul, and his difficult upbringing in Florida.
Taipei will be released on June 4 from Vintage and is available for pre-order now.
Paul’s father was 28 and Paul’s mother was 24 when they alone (out of a combined fifteen to twenty-five siblings) left Taiwan for America. Paul was born in Virginia six years later, in 1983, when his brother was 7. Paul was 3 when the family moved to Apopka, a pastoral suburb near Orlando, Florida.
Paul cried the first day of preschool for around ten minutes after his mother, who was secretly watching and also crying, seemed to have left. It was their first time apart. Paul’s mother watched as the principal cajoled Paul into interacting with his classmates, among whom he was well liked and popular, if a bit shy and “disengaged, sometimes,” said one of the high school students who worked at the preschool, which was called the Discovery Center. Each day, after that, Paul cried less and transitioned more abruptly from crying to interacting with classmates, and by the middle of the second week he didn’t cry anymore. At home, where mostly only Mandarin was spoken, Paul was loud and either slug-like or, his mother would say in English, “hyperactive,” rarely walking to maneuver through the house, only crawling, rolling like a log, sprinting, hopping, or climbing across sofas, counters, tables, chairs, etc. in a game called “don’t touch the ground.” Whenever motionless and not asleep or sleepy, lying on carpet in sunlight, or in bed with eyes open, bristling with undirectionalized momentum, he would want to intensely sprint in all directions simultaneously, with one unit of striving, never stopping. He would blurrily anticipate this unimaginably worldward action, then burst off his bed to standing position, or make a loud noise and violently spasm, or jolt from the carpet into a sprint, flailing his arms, feeling always incompletely satisfied.
Continue

An Excerpt from Tao Lin’s Taipei

Over the past month or so we’ve been publishing a whole slew of iPhone photos Tao Lin took on a recent visit to Taipei, the place from which his new novel takes its title. Pictures are all well and good (and we’ll be publishing another batch of them tomorrow), but to give you a real idea of what Tao’s new book is like, we thought it fitting to publish an excerpt. This is the first glimpse of Taipei Vintage has released, and it concerns the main character, Paul, and his difficult upbringing in Florida.

Taipei will be released on June 4 from Vintage and is available for pre-order now.

Paul’s father was 28 and Paul’s mother was 24 when they alone (out of a combined fifteen to twenty-five siblings) left Taiwan for America. Paul was born in Virginia six years later, in 1983, when his brother was 7. Paul was 3 when the family moved to Apopka, a pastoral suburb near Orlando, Florida.

Paul cried the first day of preschool for around ten minutes after his mother, who was secretly watching and also crying, seemed to have left. It was their first time apart. Paul’s mother watched as the principal cajoled Paul into interacting with his classmates, among whom he was well liked and popular, if a bit shy and “disengaged, sometimes,” said one of the high school students who worked at the preschool, which was called the Discovery Center. Each day, after that, Paul cried less and transitioned more abruptly from crying to interacting with classmates, and by the middle of the second week he didn’t cry anymore. At home, where mostly only Mandarin was spoken, Paul was loud and either slug-like or, his mother would say in English, “hyperactive,” rarely walking to maneuver through the house, only crawling, rolling like a log, sprinting, hopping, or climbing across sofas, counters, tables, chairs, etc. in a game called “don’t touch the ground.” Whenever motionless and not asleep or sleepy, lying on carpet in sunlight, or in bed with eyes open, bristling with undirectionalized momentum, he would want to intensely sprint in all directions simultaneously, with one unit of striving, never stopping. He would blurrily anticipate this unimaginably worldward action, then burst off his bed to standing position, or make a loud noise and violently spasm, or jolt from the carpet into a sprint, flailing his arms, feeling always incompletely satisfied.

Continue

Tao Lin’s Photos of Taipei Signs
Over the next few weeks, in celebration of the forthcoming release of Tao Lin’s latest novel, Taipei, we will be featuring a weekly selection of photos taken by the author during his recent trip to Taipei, Taiwan. While there, he took thousands of pictures with his iPhone, pictures which he has divided into albums titled things like “Taipei fashion,” “Taipei carbs,” “Taipei babies,” and “Taipei animals,” among others. In this selection, Tao shows us some of his favorite signs around Taipei.
Taipei will be released on June 4 from Vintage and is available for pre-order now. To read an early excerpt from the novel that we published in 2011 titled “Relationship Story,” click here.
"scoopo it up"
"Frying Milk"
Seems interesting.
"Former Noodles"
"Arcade"
"Beware of column"
Continue

Tao Lin’s Photos of Taipei Signs

Over the next few weeks, in celebration of the forthcoming release of Tao Lin’s latest novel, Taipei, we will be featuring a weekly selection of photos taken by the author during his recent trip to Taipei, Taiwan. While there, he took thousands of pictures with his iPhone, pictures which he has divided into albums titled things like “Taipei fashion,” “Taipei carbs,” “Taipei babies,” and “Taipei animals,” among others. In this selection, Tao shows us some of his favorite signs around Taipei.

Taipei will be released on June 4 from Vintage and is available for pre-order now. To read an early excerpt from the novel that we published in 2011 titled “Relationship Story,” click here.


"scoopo it up"


"Frying Milk"


Seems interesting.


"Former Noodles"


"Arcade"


"Beware of column"

Continue

Facedown Generation
Over the next month, in celebration of the forthcoming release of Tao Lin’s latest novel, Taipei, we will be featuring a weekly selection of photos taken by the author during his recent trip to Taipei, Taiwan. While there, he took thousands of pictures with his iPhone, pictures which he has divided into albums titled things like “Taipei fashion,” “Taipei carbs,” “Taipei babies,” and “Taipei animals,” among others. The images were taken between January and February 2013 during one of his semiannual visits to the Taiwanese capital, where his parents live.
This week’s photos are named after a term* in Taiwan, which Tao’s mom says she first heard on TV, for people who seem unable to stop looking at their phones while in public.
All photos and captions by Tao Lin.
*literal translation from Mandarin is something like “head-lowered [‘group’ or ‘troupe’].”
Taipei will be released on June 4 from Vintage and is available for pre-order now. To read an early excerpt from the novel that we published in 2011 titled “Relationship Story,” click here.

This woman is staring at her Samsung Galaxy thinking, What am I trying to look at? what is my finger wanting to push? The screen is black. 

The teenager with white shoes is trying to convince himself that no one can see what he’s looking at and that, even if they could, he shouldn’t feel embarrassed, or whatever, because he’s only, at the moment, looking at his Gmail account. The man in the red-striped shirt is trying to cancel his Boingo account for what must be, he thinks, the 20th time, or something insane like that, in probably not even a full year.

This man is rereading an article titled “CNET Asia’s Top 10 phones.” His LG Optimus G is ranked number seven. He doesn’t know how he feels about this. Being worse than six phones, on a list of ten phones, seems bad, but being listed at all—how many phones are there? hundreds? thousands?—seems good.
Continue

Facedown Generation

Over the next month, in celebration of the forthcoming release of Tao Lin’s latest novel, Taipei, we will be featuring a weekly selection of photos taken by the author during his recent trip to Taipei, Taiwan. While there, he took thousands of pictures with his iPhone, pictures which he has divided into albums titled things like “Taipei fashion,” “Taipei carbs,” “Taipei babies,” and “Taipei animals,” among others. The images were taken between January and February 2013 during one of his semiannual visits to the Taiwanese capital, where his parents live.

This week’s photos are named after a term* in Taiwan, which Tao’s mom says she first heard on TV, for people who seem unable to stop looking at their phones while in public.

All photos and captions by Tao Lin.

*literal translation from Mandarin is something like “head-lowered [‘group’ or ‘troupe’].”

Taipei will be released on June 4 from Vintage and is available for pre-order now. To read an early excerpt from the novel that we published in 2011 titled “Relationship Story,” click here.

This woman is staring at her Samsung Galaxy thinking, What am I trying to look at? what is my finger wanting to push? The screen is black. 

The teenager with white shoes is trying to convince himself that no one can see what he’s looking at and that, even if they could, he shouldn’t feel embarrassed, or whatever, because he’s only, at the moment, looking at his Gmail account. The man in the red-striped shirt is trying to cancel his Boingo account for what must be, he thinks, the 20th time, or something insane like that, in probably not even a full year.

This man is rereading an article titled “CNET Asia’s Top 10 phones.” His LG Optimus G is ranked number seven. He doesn’t know how he feels about this. Being worse than six phones, on a list of ten phones, seems bad, but being listed at all—how many phones are there? hundreds? thousands?—seems good.

Continue

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