The Amazing Adventures of Kavalier and Clay

ChabonK&CAfter a fixation with the prose of Hilary Mantel (when she’s writing about Cromwell) I’ve turned back to an old favourite to dip into at leisure: The Amazing Adventures of Kavalier and Clay by Michael Chabon.

I’ve become sensitive about mispronouncing things lately and I must have missed the book’s clues on how to say the name Kavalier when I first read this gigantic American novel. I’m now busy correcting my auto pronunciation after discovering it’s Kavalier as in Maurice. I’m not sure how old you have to be to get that, Maurice Chevalier died in 1972. But it’s that kind of book, best not to skim…

Via google today I found a Chabon quote which I rather like even though I have little hope of learning from it. Interesting to think about though if reading Chabon’s work:

Re Ray Bradbury’s The Rocket Man:

I think it was when I got to the butterflies — in that brief, beautiful image comprising life, death and technology — that the hair on the back of my neck began to stand on end. All at once, the pleasure I took in reading was altered irrevocably. Before then I had never noticed, somehow, that stories were made not of ideas or exciting twists of plot but of language. And not merely of pretty words and neat turns of phrase, but of systems of imagery, strategies of metaphor.  For the full statement see Washington Post archive

Here’s a summary

Here’s a review