Sunday, April 29, 2012

Featured: Three Books, Three Covers

5 Novels by Ronald Firbank
New Directions
Hardcover







Constance Rourke, American Humor
Cover by Edward Gorey
Paperback





Six Plays Of Clifford Odets
Modern Library
Hardcover




These books, and thousands of others, can be purchased from:

Brickbat Books
709 South Fourth Street
Philadelphia, PA 19147

215 592 1207

Open:
Tuesday: thru Saturday, 11am to 7pm
Sunday: 11am to 6pm
Closed Monday 

Saturday, April 28, 2012

Featured: The Recognitions

Reissued a few months back by Dalkey Archive...




William Gaddis, The Recognitions
Introduction by William H. Gass
Paperback

"The book Jonathan Franzen dubbed the "ur-text of postwar fiction" and the "first great cultural critique, which, even if Heller and Pynchon hadn't read it while composing Catch-22 and V., managed to anticipate the spirit of both"—The Recognitions is a masterwork about art and forgery, and the increasingly thin line between the counterfeit and the fake. Gaddis anticipates by almost half a century the crisis of reality that we currently face, where the real and the virtual are combining in alarming ways, and the sources of legitimacy and power are often obscure to us."



This book, and thousands of others, can be purchased from:

Brickbat Books
709 South Fourth Street
Philadelphia, PA 19147

215 592 1207

Open:
Tuesday: thru Saturday, 11am to 7pm
Sunday: 11am to 6pm
Closed Monday

Thursday, April 26, 2012

Featured: Jean-Patrick Manchette

Fatale
Paperback

"Whether you call her a coldhearted grifter or the soul of modern capitalism, there’s no question that Aimée is a killer and a more than professional one. Now she’s set her eyes on a backwater burg—where, while posing as an innocent (albeit drop-dead gorgeous) newcomer to town, she means to sniff out old grudges and engineer new opportunities, deftly playing different people and different interests against each other the better, as always, to make a killing. But then something snaps: the master manipulator falls prey to a pure and wayward passion.
Aimée has become the avenging angel of her own nihilism, exacting the destruction of a whole society of destroyers. An unholy original, Jean-Patrick Manchette transformed the modern detective novel into a weapon of gleeful satire and anarchic fun. In Fatale he mixes equal measures of farce, mayhem, and madness to prepare a rare literary cocktail that packs a devastating punch."





Like A Sniper Lining Up His Shot, illustrated by Jacques Tardi
Hardcover

"Martin Terrier, ice-cold mercenary-turned-contract-killer, has his future all mapped out: He has just executed what he intends to be his final job and is ready to move on to the next phase of his life, which involves discreet retirement accompanied by a long-lost girlfriend. But Terrier’s employers are emphatically not pleased with his decision, old enemies begin to re-emerge, and soon Terrier is forced to once again ply his brutal trade.
Five years after West Coast Blues, his acclaimed adaptation of Jean-Patrick Manchette’s Le Petit bleu de la côte ouest (a.k.a. Three to Kill), Jacques Tardi returns to the world of guns, crime, betrayal and bloodshed with this stunning, grisly, and remarkably faithful interpretation of Manchette’s last completed crime thriller. Manchette himself claimed to have written the novel in an attempt to emulate the ultraviolent, hellbent-for-leather, pitch-black ambiance of Robert Aldrich’s Kiss Me Deadly, and Tardi matches him bullet for bullet and blow for blow. As The Village Voice noted of the original novel (La Position du tireur couché, released in English under the title The Prone Gunman by City Lights in 2001), “Thirty pages before the finale, it’s hard not to wonder how the book could possibly end... But the book does end, in circumstances far worse than you might easily imagine, on a note of extraordinary bleakness."




Three To Kill
Paperback

"Businessman Georges Gerfaut witnesses a murder-and is pursued by the killers. His conventional life knocked off the rails, Gerfaut turns the tables and sets out to track down his pursuers. Along the way, he learns a thing or two about himself.... Manchette-masterful stylist, ironist, and social critic-limns the cramped lives of professionals in a neo-conservative world."




"Jean-Patrick Manchette (1942–1995) was a genre-redefining French crime novelist, screenwriter, critic, and translator. Born in Marseille to a family of relatively modest means, Manchette grew up in a southwestern suburb of Paris, where he wrote from an early age. While a student of English literature at the Sorbonne, he contributed articles to the newspaper La Voix Communiste and became active in the national students’ union. In 1961 he married, and with his wife, Mélissa began translating American crime fiction—he would go on to translate the works of such writers as Donald Westlake, Ross Thomas, and Margaret Millar, often for Gallimard’s Série noire. Throughout the 1960s Manchette supported himself with various jobs writing television scripts, pornographic screenplays, young-adult books, and film novelizations. In 1971 he published his first novel, a collaboration with Jean-Pierre Bastid, and embarked on his literary career in earnest, producing ten subsequent works over the course of the next two decades and establishing a new genre of French novel, the néo-polar (distinguished from the traditional detective novel, or polar, by its political engagement and social radicalism). During the 1980s, Manchette published celebrated translations of Alan Moore’s Watchmen graphic novels for a bandes-dessinée publishing house co-founded by his son, Doug Headline. In addition to Fatale, Manchette’s novels Three to Kill and The Prone Gunman, as well as Jacques Tardi’s graphic-novel adaptations of them (titled West Coast Blues and Like a Sniper Lining Up His Shot, respectively), are available in English."




These books, and thousands of others, can be purchased from:

Brickbat Books
709 South Fourth Street
Philadelphia, PA 19147

215 592 1207

Open:
Tuesday: thru Saturday, 11am to 7pm
Sunday: 11am to 6pm
Closed Monday 





Wednesday, April 25, 2012

Featured: Three From Wakefield Press

Pataphysical Essays, Rene Daumal
Paperback

Pataphysics: the science of imaginary solutions, of laws governing exceptions and of the laws describing the universe supplementary to this one. Alfred Jarry’s posthumous novel, Exploits and Opinions of Dr. Faustroll, Pataphysician, first appeared in 1911, and over the course of the century, his pataphysical supersession of metaphysics would influence everyone from Marcel Duchamp and Boris Vian to Umberto Eco and Jean Baudrillard. In 1948 in Paris, a group of writers and thinkers would found The College of ’Pataphysics, still going strong today. The iconoclastic René Daumal was the first to elaborate upon Jarry’s unique and humorous philosophy. Though Daumal is better known for his unfinished novel Mount Analogue and his refusal to be adopted by the Surrealist movement, this newly translated volume of writings offers a glimpse at an often overlooked Daumal: Daumal the pataphysician. Pataphysical Essays collects Daumal’s overtly pataphysical writings from 1929 to 1941, from his landmark exposition on pataphysics and laughter to his late essay, “The Pataphysics of Ghosts.” Daumal’s “Treatise on Patagrams” offers the reader everything from a recipe for the disintegration of a photographer to instructions on how to drill a fount of knowledge in a public urinal. This collection also collects Daumal’s little-known column for the Nouvelle Revue Française, “Pataphysics This Month.” Reading like a deranged encyclopedia, the articles describe a new mythology for the field of science, and amply demonstrate that the twentieth century had been a distinctly pataphysical era.
Poet, philosopher, and self-taught Sanskrit scholar René Daumal (1908–1944) devoted himself to a lifelong attempt to think through death by means of what he called “experimental metaphysics”: an attempt to address metaphysical questions through scientific methodology. After co-founding the iconoclastic journal Le Grand Jeu and rejecting overtures from the Surrealist movement, he abandoned the literary path to become a disciple of the spiritual teacher George Gurdjieff.




The High Life, Jean-Pierre Martinet
Paperback

Adolphe Marlaud’s rule of conduct is simple: live as little as possible so as to suffer as little as possible. For Marlaud, this involves carrying out a meager existence on rue Froidevaux in Paris, tending to his father’s grave in the cemetery across the street, and earning the ghost of a living through a part-time job at the funerary shop on the corner. It does not, however, take into account the amorous intentions of the obese concierge of his building, who has set her widowed sights on his diminutive frame, and whose aggressive overtures will set the wheels in motion for a burlesque and obscene tragedy. Originally published in 1979, The High Life introduces cult French author Jean-Pierre Martinet into English. It is a novella that perfectly outlines the dark fare of Martinet’s vision: the terrors of loneliness, the grotesque buffoonery of sexual relations, the essential humiliation of the human condition, and the ongoing trauma of twentieth-century history.
Jean-Pierre Martinet (1944–1993) wrote only a handful of novels, including what is largely regarded as his masterpiece, the psychosexual study of horror and madness, Jérôme. Largely ignored during his lifetime, his star has only recently begun to shine in France, and he is now regarded as an overlooked French successor to Dostoyevsky. Reading like an unsettling love child of Louis-Ferdinand Céline and Jim Thompson, Martinet’s work explores the grimly humorous possibilities of unlimited pessimism




The Perpetual Motion Machine: The Story Of An Invention, Paul Scheerbart
Paperback

In the last days of 1907, the German novelist and exponent of glass architecture Paul Scheerbart embarked upon an attempt to invent a perpetual motion machine. For the next two and a half years he would document his ongoing efforts (and failures) from his laundry-room-cum-laboratory, hiring plumbers and mechanics to construct his models while spinning out a series of imagined futures that his invention-in-the-making was going to enable. The Perpetual Motion Machine: The Story of an Invention, originally published in German in 1910, is an indefinable blend of diary, diagrams and digression that falls somewhere between memoir and reverie: a document of what poet and translator Andrew Joron calls a “two-and-a-half-year-long tantrum of the imagination.” Shifting ambiguously from irony to enthusiasm and back, Scheerbart’s unique amalgamation of visionary humor and optimistic failure ultimately proves to be a more literary invention than scientific: a perpetual motion of a fevered imagination that reads as if Robert Walser had tried his hand at science fiction. With “toiling wheels” inextricably embedded in his head, Scheerbart’s visions of rising globalization, ecological devastation, militaristic weapons of mass destruction and the possible end of literature soon lead him to dread success more than failure. The Perpetual Motion Machine is an ode to the fertility of misery and a battle cry of the imagination against praxis.
Paul Scheerbart (1863–1915) was a novelist, playwright, poet, newspaper critic, draughtsman, visionary, proponent of glass architecture, and would-be inventor of perpetual motion. Dubbed the “wise clown” by his contemporaries, he opposed the naturalism of his day with fantastical fables and interplanetary satires that were to influence Expressionist authors and the German Dada movement, and which helped found German science fiction. After suffering a nervous breakdown over the mounting carnage of World War I, Scheerbart starved to death in what was rumored to have been a protest against the war.



These books, and thousands of others, can be purchased from:

Brickbat Books
709 South Fourth Street
Philadelphia, PA 19147

215 592 1207

Open:
Tuesday: thru Saturday, 11am to 7pm
Sunday: 11am to 6pm
Closed Monday 

Tuesday, April 24, 2012

Monday, April 23, 2012

Featured: The Black Arts


The Secret Book Of The Black Arts

"Containing all that is known upon the Occult Sciences of Daemonology, Spirit Rappings, Witchcraft, Sorcery, Astrology, Palmistry, Mind Reading, Spiritualism, Table Turning, Ghosts and Apparitions, Divination, Second Sight, Mesmerism, Clairvoyance,, Psychological Fascination, etc."



This book, and thousands of others, can be purchased from:

Brickbat Books
709 South Fourth Street
Philadelphia, PA 19147

215 592 1207

Open:
Tuesday: thru Saturday, 11am to 7pm
Sunday: 11am to 6pm
Closed Monday

Sunday, April 22, 2012

New Arrival: Chine by Helene Hoppenot

Chine
Texte de Paul Claudel, Photographies D'Helene Hoppenot
Skira, 1946 
(Printed paper wrappers on flexible boards)












This book, and thousands of others, can be purchased from:

Brickbat Books
709 South Fourth Street
Philadelphia, PA 19147

215 592 1207

Open:
Tuesday: thru Saturday, 11am to 7pm
Sunday: 11am to 6pm
Closed Monday

Saturday, April 21, 2012

New Arrivals: Photography From Japan


Erotos, Nobuyoshi Araki
Hardcover, (signed by the actor Masatoshi Nagase (appeared in Jim Jarmusch's Mystery Train)
(out of print)




Esumi, Fuji Tamotsu
Paperback
(out of print)





Visions Of Japan, Shibata Toshio
Hardcover
(out of print)





Still Lifes, Michiko Kon
Hardcover
(out of print)





Liquid Crystal Futures: Contemporary Japanese Photgraphy
Paperback
(out of print)






Tokyo: A City Heading For Death, Nobuyoshi Araki
Paperback




These books, and thousands of others, can be purchased from:

Brickbat Books
709 South Fourth Street
Philadelphia, PA 19147

215 592 1207

Open:
Tuesday: thru Saturday, 11am to 7pm
Sunday: 11am to 6pm
Closed Monday

Friday, April 20, 2012

Event: Joe Carducci

Wednesday, May 2nd, 7pm
at
Brickbat Books:

Joe Carducci



Joe Carducci will be at Brickbat on May 2nd to read, etc from his new book Life Against Dementia



"...a delicate blunt instrument, a diagnostic lead pipe, a triumph of American letters. Life Against Dementia is his most sweeping conspectus yet: books, movies, music, friends, history, style, art. Memoir blends into elegy, celebration into rearview manifesto. The learning is profound, the critique is total." -James Parker



"When Rock and the Pop Narcotic was first published in 1990, it incited a fair bit of controversy, startling many by the sheer aggression with which Joe Carducci lambasted America's rock-critical establishment and lashed its sacred cows. The book's vitriolic tone stemmed from the persecution complex the author acquired at the helm of SST, the hardcore punk record label founded by Black Flag that made bands like the Minutemen, the Meat Puppets, Husker Du, and Sonic Youth underground legends but failed to win them commercial success. Completed well before Seattle grunge took the punk-metal esthetic into the mainstream, Rock and the Pop Narcotic was an attempt to write '80s underground rock into history." - Simon Reynolds







Featured: Oliverio Girondo


Oliverio Girondo, Scarecrow And Other Anomolies
translated by Gilbert Alter-Gilbert
Paperback (out of print)
SOLD!

The first appearance in English of one of the most fantastic writers of Latin America, who was also something of a prankster. After writing the indescribable collection of short pieces called Espanatapájaros ("Scarecrow") in 1932, Oliverio Girondo rented a landau coach from a mortuary and hired liveried footmen and coachmen to attend the vehicle. In place of the floral wreathes he stacked copies of the book, printed with his own money,and in one seat propped up a huge scarecrow he had made out of papier-mâché, with a top hat, button eyes and painted white gloves (see photo below). Then Girondo got in and, drawn by six horses, paraded through the streets of Buenos Aires announcing publication of Espanatapájaros through a megaphone, handing out copies and directing the bewildered public to a shop on la Calle Florida. There, on the sidewalk, a bevy a pretty girls selected by the author hawked the book, its cover bearing a likeness of the same well-heeled scarecrow. By such means the edition of 5,000 copies sold out in fifteen days. The dummy scarecrow retired to the vestibule of Girondo's estate on Calle Suipacha, where it greeted unsuspecting visitors forever after. It was donated to the city museum after Girondo's death in 1976.




This book, and thousands of others, can be purchased from:

Brickbat Books
709 South Fourth Street
Philadelphia, PA 19147

215 592 1207

Open:
Tuesday: thru Saturday, 11am to 7pm
Sunday: 11am to 6pm
Closed Monday

Thursday, April 19, 2012

Featured: Ernie Bushmiller's Nancy


Ernie Bushmiller, Nancy Is Happy: Complete Dailies 1943-1945
Paperback

Drawn & Quarterly's John Stanley Nancy collections are very nice, but I've been waiting for the Bushmiller Nancy reprints for years, and here they are. Flat-footed surrealism at its best!





This book, and thousands of others, can be purchased from:

Brickbat Books
709 South Fourth Street
Philadelphia, PA 19147

215 592 1207

Open:
Tuesday: thru Saturday, 11am to 7pm
Sunday: 11am to 6pm
Closed Monday

Wednesday, April 11, 2012

Featured: Brickbat in Philadelphia Magazine


Mentioned in this month's Philadelphia Magazine article "Top Five Indie Bookstores in Philly..."

Brickbat Books
Queen Village: 709 South 4th Street
"The books in Patrick Richardson Graham’s shop are displayed like artwork: Beautiful covers face outward, all arranged on a floor-to-ceiling grid of shelves. Here, it’s not volume that delights, but the relentlessly curated selection. A smattering of new books shares space with used ones (many under $10). But most worth seeking out are the rare editions. Patrick’s favorite? His collection of Aspen, a mid-’60s multimedia magazine (these run from $500 to $900 each). Go here for: Art books in a gallery-like setting."

full article here: http://www.phillymag.com/shopping_style/articles/top_five_indie_bookstores_in_philly/

New Arrivals: Charles Fort


The Complete Books Of Charles Fort:
The Book Of The Damned, Lo!, Wild Talents, New Lands
Hardcover (out of print)


After coming into a large inheritance at the beginning of the 20th century, newspaperman Fort spent the remainder of his life in The British Museum and the New York Public Library digging through old newspapers, manuscripts, and scientific journals, collecting every paranormal and unexplained mystery he came across. His writings were much admired by everyone from Theodore Dreiser to Oliver Wendell Holmes. They also greatly influenced early science fiction, establishing many of the themes that became standard in the genre.



This book, and thousands of others, can be purchased from:

Brickbat Books
709 South Fourth Street
Philadelphia, PA 19147

215 592 1207

Open:
Tuesday: thru Saturday, 11am to 7pm
Sunday: 11am to 6pm
Closed Monday

Tuesday, April 10, 2012

Featured: Four Little Books by Leonard Baskin



Leonard Baskin's Miniature Natural History
Four miniature books in an illustrated slipcase (out of print)



These books, and thousands of others, can be purchased from:

Brickbat Books
709 South Fourth Street
Philadelphia, PA 19147

215 592 1207

Open:
Tuesday: thru Saturday, 11am to 7pm
Sunday: 11am to 6pm
Closed Monday

Monday, April 9, 2012

Featured: Two Books


3 More Novels of Ronald Firbank
Hardcover, New Directions
Cover by Andy Warhol




Carl Van Vechten, Sacred & Profane Memories
Hardcover, signed & inscribed by the author
Cover by Prentiss Taylor
(Out of Print)




These books, and thousands of others, can be purchased from:

Brickbat Books
709 South Fourth Street
Philadelphia, PA 19147

215 592 1207

Open:
Tuesday: thru Saturday, 11am to 7pm
Sunday: 11am to 6pm
Closed Monday

Sunday, April 8, 2012

Event: Chris Corsano & Willie Lane



Friday, April 20th, 8pm
at
Brickbat Books:

Chris Corsano & Willie Lane!




Chris Corsano

"...seriously one of the most exciting drummers on the planet." -Adam Richards, indieworkshop.com

First spellbound by freely improvised music in the mid-1990s after witnessing performances by TEST, William Parker, Cecil Taylor, and others, Chris Corsano began a long-standing, high-energy partnership with Paul Flaherty in 1998. A move from western Massachusetts, USA to the UK in 2005 led Corsano to develop an expanded solo music of his own, incorporating sax reeds, violin strings and bows, pot lids, and other everyday household items into his drum kit. In February 2006 he released his first solo recording, The Young Cricketer, and toured extensively throughout Europe, USA, and Japan. He spent 2007 and '08 as the drummer on Björk's Volta world tour, all the while weaving in shows and recordings on his days off with the likes of Evan Parker, Virginia Genta, and C. Spencer Yeh. Moving back to the U.S. in 2009, Corsano returned focus to his own projects, most notably a duo with Michael Flower, Rangda (with Sir Richard Bishop and Ben Chasny) and solo work, now revamped to include synthesizers and contact microphones in addition to his drum set and home-made acoustic instruments.


Willie Lane

"John's Roast Pork...Their steak meets all my requirements: sharp provolone, near-caramelized onions, fresh rolls, and spinach if I need a green. It's also the biggest. But the problem with John's is that they're only open weekdays until about 12:30pm, and my cheesesteak cravings generally hit around sundown. For an evening snack, I go to Tony Luke's because their ingredients are above average and they'll put mayo on it. Anyone arguing the merits of Pat's and Geno's is just splitting hairs over the two greatest purveyors of mediocre sandwiches in the city, but they're the only option at wee hours. For the record, I prefer Pat's." -Willie Lane, Vice Magazine

Saturday, April 7, 2012

Closed For The Holiday!


Brickbat Books is closed today, Sunday, April 8th. We will reopen on Tuesday, April 10th, at 11am. Happy Holiday!

Friday, April 6, 2012

Featured: Man of Sorrows



Joe Coleman, Man of Sorrows
Gates of Heck, 1993
Hardback, limited numbered edition
Printed in gold on black paper stock, with 18 tipped in color plates(out of print)

A book devoted to the painting Man of Sorrows by artist/cartoonist Coleman. The painting is inspired by various non-canonical accounts of the life of Jesus. The book reproduces 18 details from the painting and then elaborates on the sources for each of the episodes depicted.










This book, and thousands of others, can be purchased from:

Brickbat Books
709 South Fourth Street
Philadelphia, PA 19147

215 592 1207

Open:
Tuesday: thru Saturday, 11am to 7pm
Sunday: 11am to 6pm
Closed Monday

Sunday, April 1, 2012

Featured: Poets Ranked by Beard Weight


Poets Ranked by Beard Weight: The Commemorative Edition
by Upton Uxbridge Underwood, with commentaries by Gilbert Alter-Gilbert
Illustrated by Mahendra Singh

Poets Ranked by Beard Weight is a tongue-in-cheek classic of Edwardian esoterica, a privately printed leaflet offered by subscription to the informed man of fashion and as a divertissement au courant for the reading bins and cocktail tables of parlor cars, and smoking lounges of gentlemen’s clubs. Typifying a once-popular but nowadays seldom-encountered species of turn-of-the-century ephemera, it has become a rarity much prized by bibliophiles. See how the beards of Walt Whitman and Henry David Thoreau stack up against those of Henry Wadsworth Longfellow and Alfred Lord Tennyson.

Also includes: Fundamentals of Beard Flirtation, in which readers learn the etiquette and code of beard poses and gestures; fortune-telling through beard-reading (pogonomancy); beard-based folklore and controversies (“Public Statues: Dignitaries or Dust Catchers?”)






This book, and thousands of others, can be purchased from:

Brickbat Books
709 South Fourth Street
Philadelphia, PA 19147

215 592 1207

Open:
Tuesday: thru Saturday, 11am to 7pm
Sunday: 11am to 6pm
Closed Monday