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I don’t appreciate characters, mostly

Say Hello to the Type Reader for May—Kyle


Kyle has worked at Type for quite a long time. He was the first ever type reader. He is employee of the month. He is the author of The Laundromat Essay.

What is the first book you remember loving?
I am the Brother of XX by Fleur Jaeggy. It was only published last year, but love is a funny thing.

What is your favourite virtue in a book?
Succinctness.

What do you appreciate most in a book character?
I don’t appreciate characters, mostly.

What character (real or fictional) do you dislike the most?
It’s controversial, but I think the answer is definitely Thich Nhat Hanh. But I also tend to have trouble with David Foster Wallace fans (real or fictional).

If you were to write a non-fiction book about anything, what would it be about?
Maybe something I remembered once, but only vaguely.

Your favourite prose authors?
Spontaneously: Anne Carson, Fleur Jaeggy, Lydia Davis, John Ashbery, Giedra Radvilavičiūtė

Do you read on public transportation? 
I go out of my way to read on moving vehicles.

What book have you never read but have always meant to? Do you think you will ever read it?
I am the Brother of XX by Fleur Jaeggy. Love is a funny thing.

What book do you pretend to have read, but in fact have not?
Best European Fiction 2018. I know I’ve told people that I’ve read this anthology, but ever since the first anthology, Best European Fiction 2010 (which contains phenomenal writing), it’s been a case of diminishing returns. And disappointment got the better of me. Either the best contemporary fiction written in Europe is being protected from a North American readership, or else there is reason to worry for the state of the European union. I suspect both. But also I’d say A Prehistory of the Cloud by Tung-Hui Hu.

If you could force a single celebrity to read a specific book in its entirety, who would you choose, and what book would you make them read?
I would force Timothée Chalamet to read Motherhood by Sheila Heti. It’s a fantastic book. Kristen Stewart should read I am the Brother of XX by Fleur Jaeggy. She should star in a movie adaptation of the title story, along with Timothée Chalamet (get at me).

What book(s) are you reading right now?
Border Districts by Gerald Murnane (absolutely great), One Deadly Summer by Sebastien Japrisot, Hard Child by Natalie Shapero (excitingly named to the international shortlist for this year’s Griffin Poetry prize), VZSZHHZZ by Jeanne Graff, The Perfume Burned His Eyes by Michael Imperioli, My Year of Rest and Relaxation by Ottessa Moshfegh (will be published this summer), and I was totally kidding about A Prehistory of the Cloud by Tung-Hui Hu -I’ve read it twice (the second time this year when I was in Iceland), I am the Brother of XX by Fleur Jaeggy.