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Book Title: On the Golden Porch and Other Stories|
The author of the book: Tatyana Tolstaya
Format files: PDF
The size of the: 7.25 MB
Edition: Penguin Books Ltd
Date of issue: May 31st 1990
ISBN 13: 9780140122756
Read full description of the books On the Golden Porch and Other Stories:4.5/5
Tolstaya's frame of reference is, as it was in the masterful The Slynx, the mating of imagination and reality. Neither is the nicer one, for the former is depression, fear, the worst breed of lie, while the latter is cold, starvation, and the unthinking forging ahead that keeps the means of thought blooded and bleeding. Child, woman, man, all follow a line between fate and fiction in their respective lives that all too often leads to the banal dead end. Petya was given a large bowl of rice porridge; a melting island of butter floated in the sticky Sargasso Sea. Go under, buttery Atlantis. No one is saved. White palaces with emerald scaly roofs, stepped temples with tall doorways covered with streaming curtains of peacock feathers, enormous golden statues, marble staircases going deep into the sea, sharp silver obelisks with inscriptions in an unknown tongue—everything, everything vanished under water. What keeps it moving is the prose, an irreverent mix of internal and exterior that manages, despite the constant trend between thirteen stories, never to drown the eye in its lush enclosure. Scenes with every sight and sound and scent and texture are set in a single sentence, thoughts unravel into the mundane walk through the grimy streets and envelop it up again, people puppet themselves along their half-won dreams and half-hearted reticence, much as any mortal yearns for flight and loathes to chance the plunge. Sometimes, though, unseen and unsearched, the cliff comes up under their feet, and the change in train or word, death or life, simpering nobody or used-to-be somebody, shoves them on their unknown way. The untouched whiteness stretched, stretched, smoothly turned the corner: and on the corner, a Venetian window filled with pink light; and within it, Isolde lay awake listening to the unclear blizzard melody in the city, to the dark winter cellos. My favorite of the thirteen was "A Clean Sheet", the clearest illustration of what price the empathetic, sick with their blossoming yearning, often think they'd be willing to pay for its excision. Venerated as psychopathy is by the patriarchy, it is not for everyone. He liked the dull spot in his solar plexus. It was boss.
Read information about the authorTatyana Tolstaya (Татьяна Толстая) was born in Leningrad, U.S.S.R. As the great-grandniece of the Russian author Leo Tolstoy and the granddaughter of Alexei Tolstoy, Tolstaya comes from a distinguished literary family; but, according to Marta Mestrovic's interview in Publishers Weekly with the author, she hates ‘‘being discussed as a relative of someone.’’
Still, Tolstaya's background is undeniably one of culture and education. Her father was a physics professor who taught her two languages, and her maternal grandfather was a well-known translator.
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