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How To Shop At The Strand (Or Any Good Bookstore) With Michael Orthofer & Tyler Cowen

How To Shop At The Strand (Or Any Good Bookstore) With Michael Orthofer & Tyler Cowen

How To Shop At The Strand (Or Any Good Bookstore) With Michael Orthofer & Tyler Cowen

How To Shop At The Strand (Or Any Good Bookstore) With Michael Orthofer & Tyler Cowen

How To Shop At The Strand (Or Any Good Bookstore) With Michael Orthofer & Tyler CowenHow To Shop At The Strand (Or Any Good Bookstore) With Michael Orthofer & Tyler Cowen
How To Shop At The Strand (Or Any Good Bookstore) With Michael Orthofer & Tyler Cowen

How To Shop At The Strand (Or Any Good Bookstore) With Michael Orthofer & Tyler Cowen

Michael Orthofer is a man on a somewhat insane quest to read every significant novel. Watch Michael shop at the Strand Book Store with Tyler Cowen and take a peek into his mind as he chooses what to read next. A special thanks to Strand Book Store for the hospitality and wonderful books! Michael ...

Written by Mercatus Center on

If I were to ask myself who are the individuals I envy, high on my list would be.

Michael Orthofer.

Michael is a man on what some would consider to be an insane quest.

As someone who is trying to read every significant novel that has been written.

Tyler: So what's your algorithm exactly?You walk in the door and obviously there are.

Far far far too many books here than you could just paw through.

So you have some set of rules or principles that tell you where to go.

Michael: Well, I do focus very much on fiction.

I stop by the new book table right up.

Front Michael: The just arrived fiction!

Tyler: This may be one of the I three buy -"The Goldfinch", Donna Tartt Michael: I was thumbs down.

Michael: Preceding the end of the world.

Tyler: That's a fantastic book.

Isabel Allende - too sentimental, too simple.

Tyler: Oh I've ordered this but it hasn't come yet!

Yeah, I ordered it because of you.

In fact, so thank you.

Michael: Very good.

Tyler: It's Cuban science fiction.

Right, Don't we all want to read Cuban science fiction?

Michael: The cover for example.

Tyler: It feels drippy.

MIchael: It is very drippy.

Tyler: British covers are much better, in my opinion.

Michael: Yes.

Tyler: So you've looked at this table.

I take it your conclusion is you're buying nothing.

Michael: Making the turn.

I still have to see the other side.

I also enjoyed the.

Alejandro Jodorowsky.

Tyler: I'll put this in my maybe I will buy pile.

Tyler: You already have it, I take it?

Michael: Then I usually head down the stairs for the foreign book section because they also.

Have a quite a large selection of used French and German books.

Here we have the.

Whole French section which is actually a very good one.

They have.

An extensive French section.

The German section is relatively limited.

Michael: Some of the translations.

Tyler: Are bad, I think.

Michael: Awful!

Micheal: And not just bad, but unconscionable.

Tyler: Ah, this one you must already have.

Arno Schmidt - Is this a good one?

Michael: It's a fascinating obsessive insight.

Tyler: This is the one that's here.

It will be.

One of my three.

Three - zip, I'm beating you.

Tyler: How about this?

Michael: "La Comédie du pouvoir" Have you read it?

Tyler: No, I haven't, but if you read it you can then tell me about it.

Tyler: This one I've never read.

Classic Swiss novel, "Der grüne Heinrich".

Tyler: Is it good?

Michael: Ah.

Tyler: That means no.

Tyler: Probably i'm distracting you so I'll give you just a minute to pick something out.

And then i'll ask you about it.

Do you agree with Susan Sontag?

What do you think of Pevear and their translations?

What's your view of Neal Stephenson?

What's your favorite Dante translation?

Do you agree that the French have a better understanding of what's profound in.

Hollywood and American literature.

Than we do?

Michael: It's very hard to pick.

Feeling the time pressure now.

Michael: The bulk of the time is spent right back there where all the.

Used fiction is because they're the books that really are harder to find generally.

Michael: The nice thing about here is that you can have the old books you have titled which.

Are out of print.

And also I like that sort of the.

The fortuity of just falling into something.

I'm almost universally unimpressed by covers.

Tyler: I can't even read what the title is.

Michael: "Librarian" yes - problematic.

Tyler: That's a bad cover.

Maybe I'll make it one of my three and do some triage in a.

Moment Tyler: This is a book you surely have an opinion on.

Michael: No, actually Tyler: Possible that it might be one of your three?

Michael: Absolutely, anything in dialogue I'm easily won over.

Tyler: And you thought we could bring Michael Orthofer to the Strand, and he could find something he didn't have, but in.

Fact reality is proving otherwise.

Michael: I can find many books I've never read.

Tyler: Not that you want.

Tyler: Ok Michael, we've been shopping.

We got our books.

We were allowed three.

I'm greedy I.

Took four, but tell us first about your favorite of the three you bought.

Michael: Well I think the one I'm most curious about because the one I know the least.

About is "How We Cheat Each Other" by Odd Nerdum, which says six short.

Stories although at this.

Weight I think that those are rather impressive short stories although it is.

Limited writing on the page.

But yes, you you handed this to me.

Tyler: I figured it was your style.

Long book, complex, puzzling.

Michael: And also in dialogue, which I'm a sucker for novels in dialogue and stories in dialogue so I'm.

Very curious about that so I'm very pleased that you did to pick this up and.

Put this in my hands.

Tyler: My favorite of what I got, you put in my hands more or less.

And that's Arno Schmidt.

It's a German book about Karl May who is a German author who wrote a lot about.

The American Indians and there's a long-standing fascination in Germany.

About him and Schmidt has this magnificent work coming out in.

Translation I believe in September, which you've done more to promote than anyone.

Else and then here's one of his weird.

Offbeat works about Karl May and there it was, how could I turn it down?

Michael: All right, you also suggested this to me.

Françoise Giroud: "La Comédie du pouvoir".

And yes this is actually more of a mystery title so I'm very curious with an.

Apparently political novel and.

I'm very curious to see what becomes of it.

Tyler: I eagerly await your review.

"M Train", Patti Smith.

I like her music.

It won a National Book Award.

I saw it there.

It was an impulse buy.

I'd actually not bought it for over a year.

Up until now.

Give or take.

But here we go that was my number two pick.

Michael: Amazing restraint.

My final pick was Scarlett Thomas, "The Seed Collectors".

She's a British author who actually started out with a crime series, but she.

Writes these wonderful literary novels.

"The End of Mr.

Y" is one of my.

Favorites and this actually came out in Britain last year and there was quite a.

Bit of talk and shock on the internet that she originally couldn't find an.

American publisher for it even though she had done quite well with her books.

In America.

And finally Soft Skull Press recently came out with it so I'm very.

Much looking forward to reading that.

Tyler: And I have a Russian novel "The Librarian".

Surely some kind of dystopia even though it's about a library.

Believe it or not.

And one that you guided me to - Portuguese.

Novelist, Gonçalo M.

Tavares.

"Joseph Walser's Machine", which I know nothing about except that you recommend.

It, and that's always good enough reason to buy.

Tyler: When I go book shopping I usually take my ipad.

I open it up.

I look at it.

This time I had Michael and I never cracked it open once.

Strand, I.

Haven't been here in 30 years.

The same smell, which is wonderful.

Much more consumer friendly, which has its ups.

And downs, but I had a great time.

It's a wonderful book store if you're ever in.

Manhattan please do come to the Strand.

Michael: The wonderful thing about the Strand, a bookstore this size is that.

You're going to stumble across something no matter where you go.

And as I did on the various floors at the various stations and also some.

Pleasant surprises.

These were not books that I was expecting maybe "The Seed Collectors".

I might have expected to pick up the other two certainly not and so.

It's always great to come home with something which you hadn't planned on.

Bringing home.

If i were to ask myself who are the individuals inv high on my list would be.

Michael or faux fur.

Michael is a man on what some would consider to be an insane quest as.

Someone who was trying to read every significant novel that has been written.

So what's your algorithm exactly you walk in the door and obviously there are.

Far far far too many books here then you could just fall through.

So you have some set of rules or principles that tell you where to go.

Why do focus very much on fiction as stop by the new book table right up.

Front the just arrived picture Elliot the petty Smith is just this may be one of.

The 3i like the Goldfinch on it are on his thumbs down signs preceding the end.

Of the world.

That was intense Invitational isabel allende too sentimental simple.

Oh I've ordered this but it hasn't come yet yeah yeah I ordered it because of.

You in fact that thang very good.

Yes live in science fiction right don't we all want to be Cuban science fiction.

They cover for example if it feels that way all the BF it is very drippy.

Rediscovers are much better my friend yes.

So you've looked at this table i take it your conclusion is you're buying nothing.

Making the turn I think there's ok so maybe also enjoyed the alejandra holder.

Of the grossest up with this in my maybe i will buy pile.

You already have it i take it out yes.

Then I usually head down the stairs for the farm book section because they also.

Have a quite a large selection of use French and German books here we have the.

Whole French French section which is actually a very good one name.

An expensive French section betterment section is relatively limited some of.

The translations were are bad i think also.

Oh yeah and not just bad just just unconscionable.

Ah this one you must already have or know she may I do have a local it's a.

Good one.

It's a fascinating obsessive in sight this is the one that's here it will be.

One of my three and I are actually three threes if I'm beating you.

How did this and I can't do with that they come with you to pose life.

You ready no I haven't but if you read it you can then tell me about it.

This one I've never had classics with novel to grow in a highly that is it is.

It because that means no.

Probably i'm distracting this will give you just a minute.

I think something out and then i'll ask you good do you agree with susan's on.

TAC compliments.

What do you think it's heavier and director installations.

What's your view of neal stephenson what's your favorite Dante translation.

Do you agree that the French have a better understanding of what's found in.

Hollywood and american literature.

Then we do very hard to detect feeling the time pressure.

The bulk of the time is spent right back there where they automatically all the.

Used fiction is because they're the books that really are harder to find general.

Late the nice thing about here is that you have the old books you have tables which.

Are out of print.

And also I like that sort of the.

The fortuity of just falling into something I'm almost universally.

Unimpressed by covers can't even read with the night librarian yes a problem a.

Bad temper you know maybe i'll make it one of my three and do some triage in a.

Moment this is your booking surely have an opinion on I've never doing now.

Now No and what is possible that might be one of your three.

Absolutely anything and dialogue easily won over you thought we could bring.

Michael or for the Strand and he could find something he didn't have but in.

Fact reality is proving otherwise I may not be what you wanted.

Of course when i tried my fullback i have by the entrance.

Ok Michael we've been chopping we got our books we were allowed 3 i'm greedy i.

Took four but tell us first about your favorite of the three you bought.

Well I think the one I'm most curious about because when I know the least.

About is how we teach each other by honored room which is it says six foot.

Stories although at this.

Wait I think that those are rather impressive short stories although it is.

Limited writing on the page but yes you you handed this to me.

I figured it with your style I are much more complex puzzling and also in.

Dialogue which I'm a sucker for novels and dialogue stories and battling so i'm.

Very curious about that so i'm very pleased that you did to pick this up and.

Put this in my hands my favorite of what I got you put in my hands more or less.

And that's our no Schmidt.

It's a german book about Carl night who is a german author who wrote a lot about.

The American Indians and there's a long-standing fascination in Germany.

About him and she made has this magnificent work coming out in.

Translation i believe in September which you've done more to promote than anyone.

Else and then here's what it is weird.

Offbeat works about Carl I and there it was how could I turn it down.

All right you also suggested this to me it also has she sued by Comedy dupois.

And yes this is actually more of a mystery title so i'm very curious with a.

Apparently political novel and.

I'm break your see what becomes of it - I eagerly await your review and train.

Patti Smith I like her music and want a National Book Award.

I saw there it was an impulse 5 i'd actually not bought it for over a year.

Up until now.

Give or take but here we go that was my number two pick amazing restraint hit my.

Final pic was scarlet Thomas the seed collected.

She's a British author who she actually started out with a crime series but she.

Writes these wonderful literary novels the end of mr.

Why is one of my.

Favorites and this actually came out and written last year and there was quite a.

Bit of talk and chalk and the internet that she originally couldn't find an.

American publisher for it even though she had done quite well with her books.

And Americans and finally softail press recently came out with us since i'm very.

Much looking forward to doing that and i have a Russian novel the librarian.

Surely some kind of dystopia even though it's about a library.

Believe it or not and one that you guided me to talk me into portuguese.

Novelist and follow antibodies.

Joseph also this machine which I know nothing about except that you recommend.

It and that's always good enough reason to buy when I go book shopping i usually.

Take my ipad i open it up.

I look at it this time I had Michael ipad never cracked it open once strand I.

Haven't been here in 30 years.

The same smell which is wonderful much more consumer friendly which has its ups.

And downs but I had a great time it's a wonderful book store if you're ever in.

Manhattan please do come.

- this bad the wonderful thing about this friend bookstore this size is that.

You really you're going to stumble across something no matter where you go.

And as I great about the various floors at the various stations and also some.

Pleasant surprises these were not books that i was expecting maybe the sea.

Collectors I might have expected to pick up the other two certainly not and so.

It's always great to come home with something which you hadn't planned on.

Bringing

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News & PoliticsLiteratureBook ReviewFiction BooksMercatus CenterMichael OrthoferTyler CowenStrand Book StoreOdd NerdumFrancoise GiroudScarlett ThomasArno SchmidtPatti SmithMikhail ElizarovGoncalo M. TavaresComplete ReviewLiterary SaloonForeign Fiction
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