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By Richard Selzer

A energetic and intimate collection of letters on lifestyles, literature, and paintings from certainly one of America’s best prose stylists.

In 1988, whilst writer and previous general practitioner Richard Selzer spoke back a letter from Peter Josyph, a brand new York artist he had met, he didn't understand that he was once embarking at the such a lot enduring correspondence of his lifestyles. In millions of letters, written in longhand over the process twenty years, Selzer dedicated himself to the epistolary art—an paintings that, even between writers, has develop into more and more infrequent in an age of cellphones, e-mails, and textual content messaging. “Letters are certainly a genre,” Selzer says, “and i believe it’s one of many best.” As this energetic and intimate assortment demonstrates, Richard Selzer is one in every of its grasp practitioners.

In spontaneous, conversational kind, Selzer writes approximately his lifestyles and paintings with the unpredictable imaginative and prescient and sharpness of wit that, in his tales, memoirs, and private essays, have made his recognition as one of many nice prose stylists of his day. it's also the checklist of a friendship. As Peter Josyph feedback in his advent, “With a superb correspondence, as with the blowing among horn avid gamers improvising off each one other’s riffs, it isn’t effortless to assert even if it’s artwork or society since it is either one of them instantaneously. it is a ebook approximately males who price a friendship balanced upon phrases; males for whose friendship the telephone is a thief; males who're happy with the U.S. mail.”

“…collectively [the letters] show a brooding Selzer, a guy regularly doubting himself as a author, doubting his selection to go away surgical procedure; but we additionally see a guy able to hovering to nearly giddy heights, sustained by way of a tart tongue and a bent to veer towards the dramatic. he's a guy of many voices. Selzer and Josyph appear to stabilize each one other—Richard the older regularly encouraging Peter the more youthful, consistently praising … the less-experienced author, who's additionally a painter, playwright, actor, raconteur … Selzer’s letters include Josyph; they solution him in sustained dialog over a protracted interval of time—their cumulative impression of worth to either pupil and customary reader.” — Sewanee Review

“Richard Selzer has lengthy been a favourite of mine. His tales are fascinating.” — Annie Dillard, writer of Tickets for a Prayer Wheel

Richard Selzer is a former health practitioner and professor on the Yale tuition of drugs. he's additionally the writer of many books of brief tales and essays, together with Rituals of Surgery; Confessions of a Knife; The specific position of the Soul; and Knife tune Korea: A Novel, additionally released through SUNY Press. He has been venerated with a Guggenheim Fellowship, a countrywide journal Award, the Pushcart Prize, and the yank clinical Writers Award. He lives in New Haven.

Peter Josyph is a author, painter, actor, and filmmaker. he's writer of Liberty highway: Encounters at flooring Zero; What One guy acknowledged to a different: Talks with Richard Selzer; and The Wounded River: The Civil conflict Letters of John Vance Lauderdale, M.D., which used to be a brand new York instances extraordinary publication in 1993. He directed the award-winning documentary Liberty road: Alive at flooring Zero. He lives on lengthy Island.

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