NYRB Classics: recommendations?

Loving Alfred and Guinevere and Skylark makes me think… are there little-known NYRB Classics that you would especially recommend?

I find that their list is extremely varied, and there are lots that I probably wouldn’t bother picking up – but I am besotted with many of their authors, including Tove Jansson, Elizabeth von Arnim, Elizabeth Taylor, Ivy Compton-Burnett, and Rose Macaulay. And then things like those two novels aforementioned that I knew nothing about before being seduced by those NYRB covers. OH, and the extraordinary The Slaves of Solitude by Patrick Hamilton.

(I have stolen Thomas’s image of NYRBs again, because I love it so much. Sorry, Thomas. And thanks.)

So please, dear NYRB fans, let us know your recommendations in the comments, please!

14 thoughts on “NYRB Classics: recommendations?

  • April 9, 2015 at 7:13 am
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    I'll be reading along as I too never quite know how to navigate and pick from their list. I'll be looking into some of the authors you've mentioned and I hadn't heard of as well :-)

    Iris on Books (can't seem to sign in on this computer)

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  • April 9, 2015 at 11:30 am
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    They have some of the Simenon 'romans durs' on their list – Dirty Snow was marvellous.

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  • April 9, 2015 at 12:53 pm
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    Neither of them are particularly little-known, but just this week I happened to read and really enjoy two NYRB Classics: The Post-Office Girl by Stefan Zweig and Wish Her Safe at Home by Stephen Benatar.

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  • April 9, 2015 at 5:16 pm
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    Recently came across a WONDERFUL book in library: 'Stoner' by John Williams, who I'd not heard of before. It's the tale of an obscure life – an assistant professor in a midwestern university, and his life: his love for his subject , a most dreadful marriage, colleagues good and bad…. It's beautiful, sad and I think you'd love it.
    Sally Tarbox

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  • April 10, 2015 at 12:35 am
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    Elaine Dundy's the Dud Avocado is great!

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  • April 10, 2015 at 1:30 am
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    The Post-Office Girl by Stefan Zweig is BRILLIANT. Also The Balkan Trilogy by Olivia Manning; The Go-Between by L.P. Hartley; The True Deceiver by Tove Jansson; and The Fountain Overflows by Rebecca West. But you've probably read all of these already.

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  • April 10, 2015 at 3:16 am
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    A Month in the Country by J.L. Carr! It's a quiet, thoughtful book about a WWI vet who has been hired on by a small village to uncover a mural that's hidden under whitewash in their church. I picked it up on a whim because I have also had good experiences with the NYRB classics, and I fell in love instantly.

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  • April 10, 2015 at 4:38 am
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    I'd like to push 'The Mountain Lion' by Jean Stafford. It's a bleak, tragic, yet fiercely beautiful coming of age tale set in the American West. Stafford is a great writer and one who I'd like to see more readers discover. I loved this book and hope you'll consider it!

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  • April 10, 2015 at 4:01 pm
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    Great Granny Webster by Caroline Blackwood is one I think you would enjoy. It's novella length.

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  • April 10, 2015 at 8:10 pm
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    NYRB publishes Patrick Leigh Fermor's travel narratives, the first two as reprints – "A Time of Gifts" and "Between the Woods and the Water", and recently the trilogy's finale, "The Broken Road". Extraordinary, beautiful writing throughout. I will also second the suggestion for NYRB's 'A Month in the Country', loved it. The film was good too. One more NYRB reprint – Darcy O'Brien's autobiographical novel about his terrible Hollywood childhood, "A Way of Life, Like Any Other". I didn't love it, but it really got to me. Good teenager-with-unbearable-parents story.

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  • April 16, 2015 at 5:32 pm
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    Richard Hughes' A High Wind in Jamaica and Oakley Hall's Warlock.

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