By the Book with Lauren Groff
Lauren Groff: By the Book
Lauren Groff, author most recently of the story collection “Florida,” sees Mr. Rochester as a villain: “He’s a sociopath who keeps his grieving wife locked in the attic and tries to gaslight poor, plain, abused Jane Eyre then marry her bigamously.”
What books are on your nightstand?
I don’t know if I have a nightstand anymore. I do have an avalanche of books with a reading light sticking out of it. From across the room, I can see the autobiography of Lili’uokalani, the Hawaiian queen and songwriter who composed “Aloha ‘Oe,” Sigrid Nunez’s “The Friend” and two novels by Marie-Claire Blais, a Québécoise writer who now lives in Key West: “La Belle Bête” and “Soifs.”
What’s the last great book you read?
I just read two great books at the same time: I reread Jean Stafford’s “The Mountain Lion,” which is one of the strangest and angriest novels of the 20th century, and for the first time I read Morgan Parker’s “There Are More Beautiful Things Than Beyoncé,” a brilliant poetry collection playing so cunningly with pop culture that it reminded me that pop culture is astonishingly deep and fascinating and is only considered frivolous because it — like caretaking careers and the domestic sphere — is devalued for being considered primarily feminine. Read more at The New York Times.