cover image Ostinato


Louis-Rene Des Forets. University of Nebraska Press, $50 (153pp) ISBN 978-0-8032-1718-8

""Memory, untiring memory that multiplies its illusions with a perverse art, memory turbulent as a child running from room to room"": style is substance in award-winning French novelist and poet Louis-Ren des Forts's (1918-2000) episodic and inventive autobiography (in the loosest definition of the term) Ostinato. Imagistic paragraphs follow one another with the dream-logic of a ghazal, and the power of emotions becomes the note struck again and again (the title means a musical figure insistently repeated). CUNY professor Mary Ann Caws translates and prefaces a volume that shies away from concrete dates and details, but relishes in the most profound sensations of the author's life. (June)