Books

What Paul Auster is reading

The author of ''Smoke and Blue in the Face'' is currently enjoying ''The Unredeemed Captive'' and ''A Void''

I just finished The Unredeemed Captive, by John Demos. It’s about a family who were captured by Canadian Indians in 1704, and the story of one daughter who stayed and married an Indian, The novel I’m finishing is A Void, by Georges Peec. This is the famous novel that was written without using the letter e, and the translation doesn’t use the letter e either, which is extraordinary. You don’t really feel the absence of the e — generally speaking, it flows quite well. For, example, on page 33: ”So our young pilgrim sails forth to this Island of Lost Souls on which his companion, almost throttling him, binds him to a rock with a with a hangman’s tight collar.”

Originally posted June 2 1995 — 12:00 AM EDT

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