Greg Cwik is a contributor to the Brooklyn Rail.
TALK TALKBy Greg Cwik
William Gaddis was one of the 20th centurys most acerbic writers of dialogue, a novelist who, from simple words and serpentine sentences, evinced the mendacity of the current zeitgeist in four different decades.
Joshua Cohen’s The NetanyahusBy Greg Cwik
Joshua Cohen is one of those hyper-literate, glasses-wearing polyglot penmen, a writer who reads everything and whose work harks back to writers of a certain curiosity like Barthes and Gaddis, yes, and David Foster Wallace of course; and, at times, earlier in his career, Cohen flaunted a wandering, wondering intellectual gait redolent in its momentum of that most elusive of postmodernists, James McElroy, New Yorker know-it-all who bombards loyal readers with his fusillade of voices, sentences twisted serpentine.
The Pure Present: Ben Lerner’s The Topeka SchoolBy Greg Cwik
Ben Lerner belongs to a rarefied cadre of writer: the poet-novelist. His sedulous understanding of poetry informs the language of his prose, which is beautiful and complicated but never lapses into gaudy braggadocio; it is empathetic, intellectual without being masturbatory, anxious yet assured, a deft coalescence of memoirish self-vivisection and critical commentary.