A Hedonist in the Cellar: Adventures in Wine by Jay McInerney

By Jay McInerney

In A Hedonist within the Cellar, Jay McInerney gathers greater than 5 years' worthy of essays and maintains his exploration of what's new, what's enduring, and what's surprising--giving his palate an entire exercise session and the reader an quintessential, idiosyncratic consultant to an international of just about limitless style. choked with delights oenophiles all over will savour, it is a assortment pushed not just by means of wine itself but in addition the folks who make it.

An unique, impossible to resist publication that's crucial for an individual enthralled by means of the myriad pleasures of wine.

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You can perhaps find approximations of such effects in a few other places, among the symbolists, for instance, but for writers of fiction no one I know of—not Pater or Proust, Chekhov or James, Woolf, Nabokov, Updike, or anyone later—comes close to the way Joyce threads the course of his fictions through the glimmerings and awakenings of his characters, through the percepts, made and in making, of his resident perceptors. These observations of mine are not original. Over forty years ago Frank O’Connor remarked of the phrase “The high cold empty gloomy rooms,” from “Araby,” pretty much what I just said about Stephen’s crackling shells in “Proteus,” that their order follows, as he put it, “almost experimentally,” the young 32 John Gordon protagonist’s stages of apprehension: “Because he is so small, the first thing the boy notices is that the rooms are high; then he perceives the cold and associates it with the rooms themselves; then he realizes that they are cold because they are empty, and finally comes the emotive adjective ‘gloomy’ that describes their total impression” (O’Connor 19–20).

The Pussens Perplex 33 like it before—I had in place an expectation of what it might be, what to listen for. The second sound was qualitatively richer and more distinct because I had pricked up my ears for it. Were I as musically inclined as most of Joyce’s Dubliners, I might then be able, like Leopold Bloom at the end of “Calypso,” to detect the musical “third,” that is (in the words of the OED), “a note three diatonic degrees above or below a given note . . also . . ” of St. George’s bells.

Beyond this, however, the lines devoted to Bloom’s reading of the throwaway constitute a catalog of pagan, Jewish, and Christian forms of sacrifice in their character as acts of violence in the name of the sacred. According to popular belief, the druids sacrificed human victims to their gods. The “foundation of a building” recalls the construction of the Temple in 1 Kings 6–8, built by the forced labor of tens of thousands, and dedicated by “sacrificing sheep and oxen that could not be told nor numbered for multitude” (1 Kings 8:5).

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