booknotes: Matthew Kirkpatrick, The Ambrose J. and Vivian T. Seagrave Museum of 20th Century American Art

In The Ambrose J. and Vivian T. Seagrave Museum of 20th Century American Art, Matthew Kirkpatrick shows us what the novel can do with language and structure without sacrificing an attention to the strange, varied desires of the human heart. Composed of captions to fictional art works, and interspersed with the slow-play stories of those who view these works, Kirkpatrick’s novel offers us multiple approaches to the book – as mystery, as art catalog, as a collective tale of a community of creators. Particularly revelatory and uncanny for me are the collection of doll houses, which give us miniaturized windows onto the girl whose disappearance drives us through these wonderful pages. Most highly recommended!

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