I’m going to take out a trial, digital-only sub to The New Yorker, largely so I can read short stories by Alice Munro and others. I don’t intend to renew once the trial is over. I’m undecided between 3 months for $6 and $50 for a year.

I’m still watching Stumptown for now, though it’s not getting any better. In last night’s episode a singer’s manager encouraged an obsessed fan to stalk her, to make her feel threatened and more dependent on the manager. Preposterous 📺

I’ve been trying to avoid using the word “lockdown” because I don’t believe it’s accurate. I’ve been getting out to walk the dog every day and don’t feel that my movements are all that constrained. I’m wondering if the terminology is making people more stir crazy than necessary?

I haven’t read any of Alice Munro’s short stories. I caught Almodovar’s film Julieta on tv at the weekend and was surprised to see in the credits that it’s based on no fewer than three of Munro’s stories, all from the collection Runaway. I think I need to read that soon 📖 🍿

Hey, I got 7 out of 10 in this Irish Times quiz about Normal People. I watched only the first episode of the tv series and I haven’t yet reread the book (having first read it back in August), so I’m happy with that 📖 📺

Erica Sadun enthuses about the MacOS Preview app, and offers a workshop on its little-known features. It may be the app I missed most when I was without a Mac, particularly for its ability to merge/split/reorder PDFs.

London Jazz News will not be posting tomorrow 🎶

London Jazz News not posting 2 June

Total Recall at 30: a thrilling reminder of Paul Verhoeven at his best. My favourite Verhoeven movie, even better than Starship Troopers 🍿

My final example of book cover art (🎨 day 7) is another Italian book that I knew nothing about until its cover caught my attention and I Googled it. I read a brief excerpt from the English translation and … well, I still like the cover.

What avail him now his awards and prizes,
The praise expended upon his meticulous technique,
His individual new voice?
Knocked into the middle of next week

Clive James, “The book of my enemy has been remaindered” is out from behind the LRB paywall for today only ✏️

The luminous background colour, the stylized figure, the spare font: this cover is so eyecatching that you wonder why everybody doesn’t do something like this. I’ve read an excerpt and I’m not sure the book itself appeals to me — but what a cover! 🎨 Art challenge day 6.

Weike Wang, Chemistry cover

I saw this cover and immediately thought “That’s a book I’m going to read”. I’m not sure exactly why (and I still haven’t read it, but it won’t be long now) but it definitely appealed to me. Art 🎨 challenge, day 5: Rachel Kushner, The Flamethrowers

Kushner, The Flamethrowers cover

I don’t know what edition of Wuthering Heights this is, but I love the cover (as well as the book). The unkerned, top heavy sans letters (with different Rs) trying unsuccessfully to impose order on the landscape … Art challenge day 4 🎨

Wuthering Heights cover

OK, so now it’s a breach of the rules on impartiality to say that somebody “broke the rules” when he very obviously broke the rules. Should the duty to be impartial require suppression of the truth?

I forgot to add the cover image for Seven Types of Ambiguity when I posted my entry for day 3 of the art 🎨challenge. So, I deleted that post and immediately posted the same text again, this time with the image. but the image still isn’t showing, so here it is again.

I love the old Pelican paperback covers, and William Empson’s Seven Types of Ambiguity is particularly well done. This is one of just 2 instances this week where I’m recommending the book as well as liking the cover. May art challenge day 3 🎨

Day 2 of the final week of the May MB challenge (art 🎨). I’m posting examples of book cover art that have impressed me. I’m not necessarily recommending the books themselves — there are several that I haven’t read — just the covers.

Almost Blue Carlo Lucarelli cover

I’m sorry to say that I’ve never been in the least competent in the visual arts. So, for the final week of the May challenge, I’m just going to post examples of book cover art 🎨 that have caught my eye. Day 1:

Naoise Dolan Exciting Times cover

My final (day 7) book recommendation is Wilkie Collins, The Woman in White. It was almost a toss-up between this and the same author’s Armadale. Both have gripping, detailed and twisty plots and wonderfully hissable villains. Big Victorian novels you can get your teeth into 📚

A list of some of my posts on Medium that I think are worth keeping and don’t fall into the broader categories of fiction, aphantasia or critical book discussion. The bulk of them from 2017/2018 and they’re mostly about writing and/or publishing.

My first thought was to dispose of the body. Then I’d tell the authorities that Frank left me for another woman.

But Tanya (not her real name) knows that her past won’t stand up to scrutiny, so she goes on the run. Lisa Lutz, The Passenger is my book recommendation for day 6 📚

I said I’ve been adding description tags to some old posts, both on artkavanagh.ie and on Medium. This included several posts about aphantasia, so it made sense also to add the descriptions to the list of all my aphantasia posts, to make it clearer what each of them is about.

Louise Doughty on the moment when “a slowly swirling mass of ideas”, accumulated search and unconnected scenes coalesced into the kernel of Apple Tree Yard 📖

Why are liberals more afraid of the coronavirus than conservatives?, asks Vox’s Ezra Klein. I’m not necessarily more afraid of the virus than of conservatives but, to the extent that I am, it’s because the latter are more predictable and I’ve had more time to watch them.

My recommendation for day 5 of the book challenge is The Burden of Proof, the second of Scott Turow’s legal thrillers. This one doesn’t have the vertiginously twisty plot of its predecessor but instead offers complex, fascinating characters and a financial crime, but no murder 📚