Additional Book Information

Series: New York Review Books
Pages: 288
Publication Date: May 9, 2017

Typewriters, Bombs, JellyfishEssays

by Tom McCarthy

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Typewriters, Bombs, Jellyfish is Tom McCarthy’s own selection of the best of the essays he has published over more than a decade in such places as The Believer and the London Review of Books. It includes essays on writers, of course (Laurence Sterne, Franz Kafka, James Joyce, and Kathy Acker among them), but also on Gerhard Richter, David Lynch, and Sonic Youth—and all of them are written with the same stylish and provocative flare that made McCarthy’s Remainder such a hit. This is an indispensable introduction to the mind and work of one of today’s most brilliant and controversial novelists. tom mccarthy


These essays are all invigorating examinations of writers (and artists such as Gerhard Richter, On Kawara, Ed Ruscha) who destroyed boundaries, collapsed rules of time, space, and gender, and bombed their own systems of control. ...Stimulating, intellectually exciting, and highly imaginative.
Kirkus (starred review)

Typewriters, Bombs, Jellyfish is bursting with ideas; it is relentlessly curious, zeroing in on topics including David Lynch, soccer virtuoso Zinedine Zidane, 'the time of fiction,' On Kawara, and the ‘displacement' that occurs when language meets weather. It encourages you to examine contradictions and to consider that art and life and literature are all part of a sticky web that retains traces of everything. Most of all, it encourages you to look more closely.
—Gabe Habash, Publishers Weekly (starred review)

McCarthy’s fiction and nonfiction aim to skewer an ideology of authenticity that is fed and watered by a certain humanist conception of literature.
—Simon Critchley

McCarthy’s crisp, clean prose is stimulating, his concepts original and his visual imagery powerful.
—Layla Sanai, The Independent