At different times in my life, I have fallen in love with different publishers: Penguin, Oxford, Dover, Modern Library, New Directions. Now I am mightily enamored with the publications of New York Review Books. The four titles illustrated above are books by authors I had never read before, but which I read this month as part of my Januarius project. Of the three best books I have read this month, two—Andrey Platonov’s Soul and Antal Szerb’s Journey by Moonlight—were New York Review Books. The third, Juan José Saer’s The Witness, was recommended to me by an article in The New York Review of Books, which publishes New York Review Books.
I am always amazed by the editorial acumen of the publishers of New York Review Books: They seek out the best in Twentieth Century literature, whether it be from Russia, Hungary, Finland, Germany, Asia, Africa, or wherever. So many of the best discoveries I have made in the last few years have come from there that I follow their emails and website closely to populate my TBR (To Be Read) list.
Just this month, they came out with Silvina Ocampo’s Thus Were Their Faces: Selected Stories. Silvina and her sister Victoria Ocampo were closely associated with Jorge Luis Borges, who is one of only two or three authors whom I idolize, collect, and ingest in bulk.