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"Henry Miller is the nearest thing to Céline America has produced.... He aims not at the ears, brains, or consciences, but at the viscera and solar plexus."--The New Leader. In 1939, after ten years as an expatriate, Henry Miller returned to the United States with a keen desire to see what his native land was really like--to get to the roots of the American nature and experience. He set out on a journey that was to last three years, visiting many sections of the country and making friends of all descriptions. The Air-Conditioned Nightmare is the result of that odyssey.
In 1939, after ten years as an expatriate, Henry Miller returned to the United States with a keen desire to see what his native land was really like -- to get to the roots of the American nature and experience. He set out on a journey that was to last for three years, visiting many sections of the country and making friends of all descriptions. "The Air-Conditioned Nightmare" is the result of that odyssey.
Aller Retour New York is truly vintage Henry Miller, written during his most creative period, between Tropic of Cancer (1934) and Tropic of Capricorn (1939). Aller Retour New York is truly vintage Henry Miller, written during his most creative period, between Tropic of Cancer (1934) and Tropic of Capricorn (1939). Miller always said that his best writing was in his letters, and this unbuttoned missive to his friend Alfred Perles is not only his longest (nearly 80 pages!) but his best--an exuberant, rambling, episodic, humorous account of his visit to New York in 1935 and return to Europe aboard a Dutch ship. Despite its high repute among Miller devotees, Aller Retour New York has never been easy to find. It was first brought out in Paris in 1935 in a limited edition, and a second edition, "Printed for Private Circulation Only," was issued in the United States ten years later. It is now available in paperback as a Revived Modern Classic, with an introduction by George Wickes that illuminates the people and personal circumstances which inform Aller Retour New York.
In his great triptych "The Millennium" Bosch used oranges and other fruits to symbolize the delights of Paradise. Whence Henry Miller's title for this, one of his most appealing books; first published in 1957, it tells the story of Miller's life on the Big Sur, a section of California coast where he lived for fifteen years. Big Sur is the portrait of a place--one of the most colorful in the U.S.--and of the extraordinary people Miller knew there: writers (& writers who didn't write), mystics seeking truth in meditation (& the not-so-saintly looking for sex-cults or celebrity), sophisticated children & adult innocents; geniuses, cranks & the unclassifiable. Henry Miller writes with a buoyancy & brimming energy that are infectious. He has a fine touch for comedy. But this is also a serious book--the testament of a free spirit who has broken through the restraints & cliches of modern life to find within himself his own kind of paradise.
"The first piece of work by a new English writer to give me any hope for the future of prose fiction." --T. S. Eliot As over-the-top as it is inventive, Durrell's breakthrough novel is a series of sordid vignettes drawn from the lives of decadent artists, doomed bohemians, and continental rascals inhabiting a shabby London hotel, narrated in turns by the unforgettable Lawrence Lucifer and Gregory Death. Together, these characters seek to escape the absurdity of a Europe haunted by devastating war, yet beginning to pitch toward another apocalypse. First published in 1938, and influenced by Henry Miller and the sincere pranksterism of the surrealist movement, The Black Book marks the emergence of one of the most revolutionary voices in twentieth-century English literature. This ebook contains a new introduction by DBC Pierre.
In this unique work, Henry Miller gives an utterly candid and self-revealing account of the reading he did during his formative years. Some writers attempt to conceal the literary influences which have shaped their thinking--but not Henry Miller. In The Books in My Life he shares the thrills of discovery that many kinds of books have brought to a keenly curious and questioning mind. Some of Miller's favorite writers are the giants whom most of us revere--authors such as Dostoeyvsky, Boccaccio, Walt Whitman, James Joyce, Thomas Mann, Lao-Tse. To them he brings fresh and penetrating insights. But many are lesser-known figures: Krishnamurti, the prophet-sage; the French contemporaries Blaise Cendrars and Jean Giono; Richard Jeffries, who wrote The Story of My Heart; the Welshman John Cowper Powys; and scores of others. The Books in My Life contains some fine autobiographical chapters, too. Miller describes his boyhood in Brooklyn, when he devoured the historical stories of G. A. Henty and the romances of Rider Haggard. He tells of the men and women whom he regards as "living books": Lou Jacobs, W. E. B. DuBois, Elizabeth Gurley Flynn, and others. He offers his reminiscences of the New York Theatre in the early 1900's--including plays such as Alias Jimmy Valentine and Nellie, the Beautiful Cloak Model. And finally, in Miller's best vein of humor, he provides a satiric chapter on bathroom reading. In an appendix, Miller lists the hundred books that have influenced him most.
Like the ancient colossus that stood over the harbor of Rhodes, Henry Miller's The Colossus of Maroussi stands as a seminal classic in travel literature. It has preceded the footsteps of prominent travel writers such as Pico Iyer and Rolf Potts. The book Miller would later cite as his favorite began with a young woman's seductive description of Greece. Miller headed out with his friend Lawrence Durrell to explore the Grecian countryside: a flock of sheep nearly tramples the two as they lie naked on a beach; the Greek poet Katsmbalis, the colossus of Miller's book, stirs every rooster within earshot of the Acropolis with his own loud crowing; cold hard-boiled eggs are warmed in a village's single stove, and they stay in hotels that have seen better days, but which have an aroma of the past.
Henry Miller's landmark travel book, now reissued in a new edition, is ready to be stuffed into any vagabond's backpack. Like the ancient colossus that stood over the harbor of Rhodes, Henry Miller's The Colossus of Maroussi stands as a seminal classic in travel literature. It has preceded the footsteps of prominent travel writers such as Pico Iyer and Rolf Potts. The book Miller would later cite as his favorite began with a young woman's seductive description of Greece. Miller headed out with his friend Lawrence Durrell to explore the Grecian countryside: a flock of sheep nearly tramples the two as they lie naked on a beach; the Greek poet Katsmbalis, the "colossus" of Miller's book, stirs every rooster within earshot of the Acropolis with his own loud crowing; cold hard-boiled eggs are warmed in a village's single stove, and they stay in hotels that "have seen better days, but which have an aroma of the past."
This collection, first published by New Directions in 1939, contains a number of Henry Miller's most important shorter prose writings. They are taken from the Paris books Black Spring (1936) and Max and the White Phagocytes (1938) and were for the most part, written at about the satire time as Tropic of Capricorn--the period of Miller's and Durrell's life in the famous Villa Seurat in Paris. As is usual with Miller, these pieces cannot be tagged with the label of any given literary category. The unforgettable portrait of Max, the Paris drifter, and the probably-autobiographical Tailor Shop, are basically short stories, but even here the irrepressible vitality of Miller's personality keeps breaking into the narrative. And in the critical and philosophical essays, the prose poems and surrealist fantasies, the travel sketches and scenarios, Miller's passion for fiction, for telling the endless story of his extraordinary life, cannot be held down. Life, as no other modern author has lived it or can write it, bursts from these pages--the life of the mind and the body; of people, places and things; of ideas and the imagination.
"A perfect expression of Miller's moral perspective as well as one of his outstanding demonstrations of narrative skill. It provides a wonderful cinematic view of two indomitable egotists in deadly conflict." --The Nation The devil in Henry Miller's Big Sur paradise is Conrad Moricand: "A friend of his Paris days, who, having been financed and brought over from Europe as an act of mercy by Mr. Miller, turns out as exacting, sponging, evil, cunning and ungrateful a guest as can be found in contemporary literature. Mr. Miller has always been a remarkable creator of character. Conrad Moricand is probably his masterpiece. . . .A Devil in Paradise is the work of a great novelist manqué, a novelist who has no stricter sense of form than the divine creator. . . .Fresh and intoxicating, funny and moving. . ." --The Times Literary Supplement (London)
"A brilliant selection . . . it is in short a voyage of discovery, an adventure and this the log of that voyage in the life of a probing and powerful writer." --Robert R. Kirsch, Los Angeles Times. Some of the most rewarding pages in Henry Miller's books concern his self-education as a writer. He tells, as few great writers ever have, how he set his goals, how he discovered the excitement of using words, how the books he read influenced him, and how he learned to draw on his own experience.
In celebration of the centennial of his birth, Into the Heart of Life: Henry Miller at One Hundred gathers a captivating selection of writings from ten of his books. The delights of his prose are many, not the least of which is Miller's comic irony, which as The London Times noted, can be "as stringent and urgent as Swift's." Frederick Turner has organized the whole to highlight the autobiographical chronology of Miller's life, and along the way places the author squarely where he belongs--in the great tradition of American radical individualism, as a child of Emerson, Thoreau, and Whitman. Miller, who joyously declared "I am interested--like God--only in the individual," would have been pleased. The keynotes here are self-liberation and the pleasures of Miller's "knotty, cross-grained" genius, as Turner describes it--"defying classification, ultimately unamenable to any vision, any program not [his] own." Or, as Henry Miller himself put it: "I am the hero and the book is myself."
A portrait of a family of proud layabouts who avoid work and sleep all day by the Egyptian writer often referred to as "the Voltaire of the Nile" Laziness in the Fertile Valley is Albert Cossery's biting social satire about a father, his three sons, and their uncle -- slackers one and all. One brother has been sleeping for almost seven years, waking only to use the bathroom and eat a meal. Another savagely defends the household from women. Serag, the youngest, is the only member of the family interested in getting a job. But even he -- try as he might -- has a hard time resisting the call of laziness.
The intimacy between Nin and Miller, first disclosed in Henry and June, is documented further in this impassioned exchange of letters between the two controversial writers. Edited and with an Introduction by Gunther Stuhlmann; Index.
Published for the first time in English, Paris 1928 (Nexus II) continues in true Henry Miller fashion the narrative begun in Nexus, the third volume of the Rosy Crucifixion trilogy. A rough draft that Miller ultimately abandoned, the story describes Miller's first wondrous glimpse of Paris and underscores several of the recurrent themes of his work. These previously unpublished memoirs capture Miller's troubled relationship with his second wife, June; reflections on what he left behind in New York's sweltering summer of 1927; and the anticipation of all that awaits him in Europe. Paris 1928 presents Miller's views on Europe on the brink of great changes, counterpointed by his own personal sexual revelry and freedom of choice. Illustrations in this edition are by Australian artist and filmmaker Garry Shead.
Henry Miller called The Smile at the Foot of the Ladder his "most singular story." First published in 1959, this touching fable tells of Auguste, a famous clown who could make people laugh but who sought to impart to his audiences a lasting joy. Originally inspired by a series of circus and clown drawings by the cubist painter Femand Léger, Miller eventually used his own decorations to accompany the text in their stead. "Undoubtedly," he says in his explanatory epilogue, °'it is the strangest story I have yet written. . . . No, more even than all the stories which I based on fact and experience is this one the truth. My whole aim in writing has been to tell the truth, as I know it. Heretofore all my characters have been real, taken from life, my own life. Auguste is unique in that he came from the blue. But what is this blue which surrounds and envelopes us if not reality itself? . . . We have only to open our eyes and hearts, to become one with that which is."
The Solitude of Compassion, a collection of short stories never before available in English, won popular acclaim when it was originally published in France in 1932. It tells of small-town life in Provence, drawing on a whole village of fictional characters, often warm and decent, at times immoral and coarse. Giono writes of a friendship forged in a battlefield trench in the midst of World War I; an old man's discovery of the song of the world; and, in the title story, the not-unrelated feelings of compassion and pity. In these twenty stories, Giono reveals his marvelous storytelling through his vivid images and lyrical prose, whether he is conveying the delicate scents of lavender and pine trees or the smells of damp earth and fresh blood.
One of Henry Miller's most luminous statements of his personal philosophy of life, Stand Still Like the Hummingbird, provides a symbolic title for this collection of stories and essays. Many of them have appeared only in foreign magazines while others were printed in limited editions which have gone out of print.
"I always carry over 40,000 gold francs about with me in my belt. They weight about 40 pounds, and I am beginning to get dysentery from the load." A collection of stories and excerpts from longer works.
This study is not literary criticism but a fascinating chapter in Miller's own spiritual autobiography. The social function of the creative personality is a recurrent theme with Henry Miller, and this book is perhaps his most poignant and concentrated analysis of the artist's dilemma.
An American expatriate, Henry Miller, describes his life in France where he has a knack for drinking and meeting women but is poor.
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