Youmans (pronounced like 'yeoman' with an 's' added) is the best-kept secret
among contemporary American writers. --John Wilson, editor, Books and Culture Marly Youmans is a novelist and poet out of sync with the times
but in tune with the ages. --First Things

Thursday, May 22, 2014

Seonjoon with white camellias--

Here's a sort of mini-review from Seonjoon in the realm of Twittery. I like it! Tweets are short but can encompass a surprising amount of thought. And at the end there's a review of the review... At her blog, Seonjoon describes herself this way:

Ordained Buddhist monastic.
Incorrigible bibliophile.
Novice shutterbug.
Aspiring practitioner.

I am glad she is an incorrigible bibliophile. She read the book in the air between Seoul and New Haven, finishing up with her feet safely planted on the ground. Thank you, Seonjoon (and DeathZen!)

* * * * * * *

I'm wasn't entirely sure what to expect when I started ' A Death at the White Camellia Orphanage, but it surely wasn't this:
Seonjoon @seon_joon A contemporary American epic, tenderly and piercingly rendered, resonant with the rhythms of the American south.
The novel's language is lush without excess, a rare feat, and characters are brought to life with deft surety. My favorite read so far year.
 9h  But was fabulous. Finished it afternoon. Looking forward to your book this summer!
 5h As well you should! :) Seriously, who else could write such a strong book review in two sentences?!


  1. Wow is all I have to say! And all that after reading the book on a plane! Clearly a strong reviewer.

    1. I appreciate her! Just ducked inside--lots of helicopters coming in for the Obama visit to Cooperstown...

    2. "Enjoy" the POTUS invasion. Whatever the occasion for his visit, I suspect everyone there is overjoyed at the disruptions.

    3. Well, my youngest enjoyed getting out of school early... He walked down and stared at the shenanigans. I weeded. Could see the protestors--mostly anti-fracking and anti-Keystone. Evidently some pro-fracking people were there as well. The POTUS never appeared outside--whipped in the back, talked for 40 minutes, and whipped out again. Going to go weed some more.

  2. That is special proof again that writers (and the rest of us) -- like Blanche DuBois -- do well to rely upon the kindness of strangers, especially when their kindness is lush without excess. But, giving it more thought, I wonder how the world of social media has altered the notion of "stranger."

    1. Yes, one can thank people immediately and directly in a way that was not possible before.

      I am always grateful when people I don't know in person are so kind as to help spread the news, that is certain.

  3. Wow to the good things in social media! I read some of her blog in the days when she was in a Buddhist monastery, in Korea I think. She took gorgeous photos of the female monastic life. Eventually was ordained. (Hope I've got the same person...I don't use twitter.)

    1. Yes, I think that's the one... She's a big reader, and commented on "Thaliad" earlier.


Alas, I must once again remind large numbers of Chinese salesmen and other worldwide peddlers that if they fall into the Gulf of Spam, they will be eaten by roaming Balrogs. The rest of you, lovers of grace, poetry, and horses (nod to Yeats--you do not have to be fond of horses), feel free to leave fascinating missives and curious arguments.