My Favourite Books

Here are some of my favourite books, a pleasant way to remind myself of what I’d also like to reread. One day they might be all that exists on a single shelf in my library (together with a handful of classics). All are books that I especially love or revere, but I’ve tried to avoid the obvious choices because no one needs to be told to read Homer, Dante, Proust, Kafka, Beckett or Woolf. There are all wonderful in their diverse ways, and are in no particular order. Please feel free to ask questions below on any of these choices.

  • Ágota Kristóf. The Notebook. trans. Alan Sheridan. Grove Press, 1997. (This collection includes The Proof and The Third Lie. trans. David Watson & Marc Romano respectively).
  • Robert Walser, Jakob von Gunten. trans. Christopher Middleton. University of Texas Press, 1970.
  • Paul Griffiths, The Tomb Guardians. Henningham Family Press, 2021.
  • Gabriel Josipovici, Moo Pak. Carcanet Press, 1994.
  • Peter Weiss, LeavetakingVanishing Point. trans. Christopher Levenson. Calder and Boyars, 1966.
  • Paul Celan, Fathomsuns and Benighted. trans. Ian Fairley. Carcanet, 2001.
  • Agnes Martin, Writings. Hatje Cantz, 1992.
  • W. G. Sebald, The Rings of Saturn. trans. Michael Hulse. Harvill Press, 1998.
  • Anne Carson, Plainwater. Alfred. A. Knopf, 1995.
  • Friederike Mayröcker, Raving Language. trans. Richard Dove. Carcanet Press, 2007.
  • Friederike Mayröcker, Raving Languagebrutt, or The Sighing Gardens. trans. Roslyn Theobald. Northwestern University Press, 2008.
  • Celia Paul, Self-Portrait. Jonathan Cape, 2019.
  • Jacques Roubaud, Great Fire of London. trans. Dominic Di Bernardi. Dalkey Archive Press, 1991.
  • Lisa Robertson, Baudelaire Fractal. Coach House Books, 2020.
  • Gerald Murnane, A Million Windows. Giramondo Publishing, 2014.
  • Gerald Murnane, Barley Patch. Giramondo Publishing, 2009.
  • Josefina Vicens, The Empty Book. trans. David Lauer. University of Texas Press, 1992.
  • Jeremy Cooper, Ash Before Oak. Fitzcarraldo Editions, 2019.
  • Hermann Broch, The Sleepwalkers. trans. Willa and Edwin Muir. Pantheon Books, 1947.
  • Maria Gabriela Llansol, Geography of Rebels trilogy. trans Audrey Young. Deep Vellum Publishing, 2018.
  • David Sylvester, Interviews with Francis Bacon, 1962-1979. Thames and Hudson, 1980.
  • Anthony Rudolf, Silent Conversations. Seagull Books, 2013.
  • Moyra Davey, The Problem of Reading. A Documents Book, 2003.
  • Annie Ernaux, The Years. Fitzcarraldo Editions, 2008.
  • Marlena Haushofer, The Wall. Quartet Books, 1990.
  • Thomas Bernhard, Wittgenstein’s Nephew. Quartet Books, 1987.
  • Thomas Bernhard, The Loser. Quartet Books, 1992.
  • Thomas Bernhard, Yes. Quartet Books, 1991.
  • Dorothy Richardson, Pilgrimage. J. M. Dent, 1967.
  • Mathias Enard, Compass. trans. Charlotte Mandell. Fitzcarraldo Editions, 2015.
  • Mathias Enard, Zone. trans. Charlotte Mandell, Fitzcarraldo Editions, 2014
  • David Gilmour, The Last Leopard. Eland Publishing, 2007.
  • V. S. Naipaul, The Enigma of Arrival. Viking, 1987.
  • Jorge Semprún, Literature or Life. trans. Linda Coverdale. Viking, 1997.
  • Pascal Quignard, The Hatred of Music. trans. Matthew Amos and Fredrik Rönnbäck. Yale University Press, 2016.
  • Max Frisch, Homo Faber. trans. Michael Bullock. Abelard-Schuman, 1959
  • Christopher Logue, War Music. Faber and Faber, 2015.
  • Denton Welch, Maiden Voyage. L. B. Fisher, 1945.
  • Denton Welch, In Youth is Pleasure. Routledge, 1944.
  • Gillian Rose, Love’s Work. Chatto & Windus, 1995.
  • Christa Wolf, Cassandra. trans. J. Van Herk. Virago Press, 1984.
  • Christa Wolf, City of Angels. trans. Damion Searls. Farrar, Straus and Giroux, 2013.
  • Peter Handke, The Afternoon of a Writer. trans Ralph Manheim. Farrar, Strauss and Giroux, 1986.
  • Peter Handke, Repetition. trans Ralph Manheim. Farrar, Strauss and Giroux, 1988.
  • Peter Handke, Across. trans. Ralph Manheim. Methuen London, 1989.
  • Jon Fosse, Melancholy II. trans. Eric Dickens. Dalkey Archive, 2014.
  • Alix Cleo Roubaud, Alix’s Journal. trans. Jan Steyn. Dalkey Archive, 2010.
  • Geoff Dyer, But Beautiful Jonathan Cape, 1991.
  • Helen DeWitt, The Last Samurai Chatto & Windus, 2000.
  • Sara Maitland, A Book of Silence. Granta Books, 2008.
  • John Berger, Here is Where We Meet. Bloomsbury Publishing, 2005.

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