László Krasznahorkai: Aprómunka egy palotaért (Spadework for a Palace)

The latest addition to my website is László Krasznahorkai‘s Aprómunka egy palotaért (Spadework for a Palace) This is a short novel about a New York librarian called herman melvill (sic). He has various obsessions, including the idea that only librarians should be able to visit libraries. He gradually becomes obsessed with his namesake Herman Melville and, following Melville’s journey from his home to his work at the Customs House, and adds in an obsession with Malcolm Lowry (who walked the same area) and architect Lebbeus Woods, who lived and worked in the area. This leads to an obsession with our interconnectedness with nature, a theme he believes, of Melville and Woods. The obsessions start taking over his life and his wife leaves him and his boss is concerned. This is a first-class work on literary madness and obsession.

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