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About Russell Hoban
Russell Hoban was the author of A Bargain for Frances, A Baby Sister for Frances, Best Friends for Frances, A Birthday for Frances, and Bread and Jam for Frances, all illustrated by Lillian Hoban. He also wrote Bedtime for Frances, illustrated by Garth Williams.
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Titles By Russell Hoban
"A hero with Huck Finn's heart and charm, lighting by El Greco and jokes by Punch and Judy. . . . Riddley Walker is haunting and fiercely imagined and—this matters most—intensely ponderable." —Benjamin DeMott, The New York Times Book Review
"This is what literature is meant to be." —Anthony Burgess
"Russell Hoban has brought off an extraordinary feat of imagination and style. . . . The conviction and consistency are total. Funny, terrible, haunting and unsettling, this book is a masterpiece." —Anthony Thwaite, Observer
"Extraordinary . . . Suffused with melancholy and wonder, beautifully written, Riddley Walker is a novel that people will be reading for a long, long time." —Michael Dirda, Washington Post Book World
"Stunning, delicious, designed to prevent the modern reader from becoming stupid." —John Leonard, The New York Times
"Highly enjoyable . . . An intriguing plot . . . Ferociously inventive." —Walter Clemons, Newsweek
"Astounding . . . Hoban's soaring flight of imagination is that golden rarity, a dazzlingly realized work of genius." —Jane Clapperton, Cosmopolitan
"An imaginative intensity that is rare in contemporary fiction.' —Paul Gray, Time
Riddley Walker is a brilliant, unique, completely realized work of fiction. One reads it again and again, discovering new wonders every time through. Set in a remote future in a post-nuclear holocaust England (Inland), Hoban has imagined a humanity regressed to an iron-age, semi-literate state—and invented a language to represent it. Riddley is at once the Huck Finn and the Stephen Dedalus of his culture—rebel, change agent, and artist. Read again or for the first time this masterpiece of 20th-century literature with new material by the author.
Life in a city can be atomizing, isolating. And it certainly is for William G. and Neaera H., the strangers at the center of Russell Hoban’s surprisingly heartwarming novel Turtle Diary. William, a clerk at a used-book store, lives in a rooming house after a divorce that has left him without home or family. Neaera is a successful writer of children’s books, who, in her own estimation, “looks like the sort of spinster who doesn’t keep cats and is not a vegetarian. Looks…like a man’s woman who hasn’t got a man.” Entirely unknown to each other, they are both drawn to the turtle tank at the London zoo with “minds full of turtle thoughts,” wondering how the turtles might be freed. And then comes the day when Neaera walks into William’s bookstore, and together they form an unlikely partnership to make what seemed a crazy dream become a reality.
Russell Hoban’s first novel for adults, The Lion of Boaz-Jachin and Jachin-Boaz (1973) was widely acclaimed by critics and earned comparisons to Tolkien and C. S. Lewis. Both a humorous and light-hearted fantasy and an insightful meditation on the sometimes difficult relationships between fathers and sons, it is a perfect introduction to the work of this brilliant writer.
‘Magic at work . . . Funny as well as beautiful.’ - Irish Times
‘Mr. Hoban is unclassifiable, thank goodness. His narrative is so minutely and compellingly realistic that after a time you cease to notice that he has stood reality on its head.’ - Sunday Times
‘[O]f outstanding quality . . . unusually vivid imagination . . . immensely striking use of words.’ - The Spectator
'Superb ... Pilgermann is history, metaphysics, a tangle of mysteries, profound and simple.' - Guardian
'Not an easy read, only a fascinating and rewarding one.' - Time
'A Mad Max of a metaphysical story ... intriguing ... mysterious.' - Los Angeles Herald Examiner
'Pilgermann wants to jump off the page to lay hands on your shirtfront.' - Washington Post
In Hospital Ward A4, Kleinzeit discovers he is not alone: his fellow patients also suffer from nonsensical but possibly deadly ailments which all have something strange in common. With the help of the beautiful night nurse and armed with a glockenspiel and a paperback of Thucydides, Kleinzeit escapes from hospital and finds himself plunged headlong into a wild and flickering netherworld of mystery involving the Underground, an enigmatic red-bearded man, a key, sheets of yellow paper, and Death himself . . .
A hilarious, surreal and completely unpredictable novel about one man’s search for reality, Kleinzeit (1974) is one of Russell Hoban’s best-loved works.
“Hoban is as funny and unusual as any writer around . . . Kleinzeit is a sort of holy fool, a fierce, lonely intelligence desperately trying to make sense of a hopeless world. A tour de force.” - Evening Standard
“Hoban is an extraordinarily talented novelist, an original mind in the era of mass-produced philosophers.” - Irish Times
“Delightful . . . Kleinzeit’s language is forever astonishing.” - Boston Globe
In 1977, when Jim Henson debuted the now-classic film Emmet Otter's Jug-Band Christmas, few knew it was based on a story written and illustrated by Russell and Lillian Hoban, creators of Bread and Jam for Frances and other treasured children's books. With an enduring score by the great Paul Williams, the movie remains a holiday tradition in homes across America. Now the book that started it all is back in print, in a beautiful gift edition that will thrill Muppets fans young and old.
Inspired by the classic tale "The Gift of the Magi," the story begins in a poor country cottage, as Emmet Otter dreams of buying Ma a piano for Christmas, while Ma dreams of buying Emmet a guitar. When a village talent contest is announced, both imagine their dreams coming true. But what they don't imagine finding is their real reward — the power of love, family, and hope in hard times.
It is a story that reaches into a reader's heart and reminds us all that fortune favors the brave.
A Bank Street College of Education Best Children's Book of the Year
"[A] welcome reissue of the Hobans' 1971 story . . . Colorful illustrations of the close-knit animal community contain plenty of warmth." —The Horn Book
In Ariosto's epic sixteenth century poem Orlando Furioso, the
beautiful Angelica is rescued by the valiant Ruggiero. He swoops in
riding a hippogriff, a fantastical winged creature, the offspring of a
griffin and a mare. Volatore, as this hippogriff calls himself, has
escaped Ariosto's poem after being trapped within it for centuries and
is now determined to find Angelica himself. Landing in San Francisco, he
meets Angelica Greenberg and the unlikely couple falls in love. But
events constantly conspire to separate them, and Volatore sets out to
find the perfect form he must embody to consummate their love.
Angelica Lost and Found contains life-enhancing wisdom and
emanates with wicked drollery, aesthetic insight and the romance of
Russell Hoban at his best.
Re-issued to coincide with the centenary of Messiaen's birth, The Messiaen Companion was the first major study to appear after the composer's death in April 1992. It was the first book to offer both a complete survey of Messiaen's extraordinary achievements and a comprehensive guide to his music, also examining in detail the enduring inspiration which Messiaen derived from his religious faith and from his lifelong passion for ornithology and the natural world.
The contributors, all of whom have made a special study of the composer, include two biographers of Messiaen and a number of the foremost interpreters of his music. Messiaen's influential teaching is recalled in essays by three of his pupils (Pierre Boulez, George Benjamin, and Peter Hill), and the composer is also remembered in a remarkable and moving contribution from his widow and devoted musical companion, the pianist Yvonne Loriod.