Archive for October, 2005

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News: IFOA

October 30, 2005

I hosted several IFOA events this past week, including readings by Francine Prose, Anita Diamant, Tim Winton, Jonathan Coe, Rick Moody, David Rakoff, Seth, Jenny Erpenbeck, Jim Lynch and Jonathan Safran Foer. It was a real blast and I extend my thanks to Geoffrey Taylor and the Harbourfront crew for their hard work.

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Books

October 3, 2005

The Hunter
(McClelland & Stewart, 2003)

from The Globe and Mail

“A spooky portrait … with a compelling tone and constellation of imagery – less a moral tale of Armageddon and more its soundtrack. Murray takes great risks with statement and image. …the collection is quite powerful, inventing an original way of seeing a world which seems to enjoy using its own tools against itself. The Hunter remakes the world with a frightening and evocative music.”

from The Toronto Star

“There’s … a life-and-death urgency here, but at a remove, as if Murray wanted to widen his scope from the close-up view of an individual to a panoramic perspective on humanity and the sweep of history. The Hunter is an ambitious, visionary collection with many haunting images. It’s chilling indeed…”

from The Quill and Quire

“Like Milton in Paradise Lost and many poets of the Western canon, Murray’s moralistic poems yearn for a golden age where man was part of the natural world… Beauty is what makes The Hunter such a compelling read. At this watershed moment in history, we are all looking for the beauty that lies somewhere between the ugliness of history and the ominous tone of prophesy.”

from Books in Canada

“For style, I think of John Ashbery’s prolix juxtapositions of estranging details, though I like Murray’s poems better (more definition, more purposeful clout, more definition between the poems). Murray has [Mark] Strand’s surreal clairvoyance, his cheeky wit. Murray works his magic by accumulation… by analogy with musical forms, whose effects are cumulative. Murray’s corrective influence invokes a hurried urgency, a nutty scrambling for an imaginative response that will jolt us awake, blow the lid off our complacency.”

from The Ottawa Citizen

“[The Hunter] draws a new language from the chaos and uncertainty of our time. … Imbued with an eerie, prophetic spirit. [It’s] as if Murray sensed the coming storm.”

from MobyLives.com

“… experience haunts these pages, but so, too, does a sense of continuance, of a relentless quest for grace, in poems that combine an admirable grittiness with enviable elegance.”

The Cottage Builder’s Letter
(McClelland & Stewart, 2001)

from The National Post

“He has the poet’s instincts, the knack for turning a good phrase and the verbal grit and suppleness to keep the reader engaged. …an important talent.”

from CBC Newsworld’s (TV) On the Arts

“… haunting poems about people set off in some way against their environment… I really think that he has talent and he’ll do more.”

from Books in Canada

“There is a fine balance in Murray that makes his poems deeply persuasive. There is an atmosphere wherein past and present, the before and after of events, mingle to create the timeless history of a place.”

from The Globe and Mail

“These poems are well-crafted and observant…”

Carousel: A Book of Second Thoughts
(Exile Editions, 2000)

from The Globe and Mail

“Framed by a central metaphor (and often suitable for framing), the poems work Calvino-like variations on the theme of mortality. [Murray] demonstrates that a firm controlling metaphor in a poem need not obviate the free play of imagination. … This is a highly impressive first book.”

from Eye Weekly

“…unusually sharp line-to-line – with image rhyme, pun, ironic wordplay and a comedian’s sense of timing …borderline brilliant.”

from The Danforth Review

“…a wide range of tones and perspectives: poignant, comic, tragic, sardonic, and erotic. …one can only say that Murray has triumphed in his metaphor.”

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Contact Info

October 3, 2005

LAND MAIL:
George Murray
c/o McClelland & Stewart Ltd.
481 University Avenue, Suite 900
Toronto, Ontario
Canada M5G 2E9

PHONE:
Tel: 416-598-1114
Fax: 416-598-7764

EMAIL:
publicity {AT} mcclelland.com

DIRECT EMAIL:
george {AT} bookninja.com

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Bio

October 3, 2005

George Murray’s four books of poetry include The Rush to Here (Nightwood, 2007), The Hunter (McClelland & Stewart, 2003), and The Cottage Builder’s Letter (M&S, 2001). He has been widely anthologized and has published poems and fiction in journals and magazines such as Alphabet City, Antigonish Review, B&A, Capilano Review, Contemporary Verse, Descant, dig, Fiddlehead, Globe and Mail, Grain, Iowa Review, Jacket, LRC, Mid-American Review, Nerve, New American Writing, New Quarterly, New Welsh Reveiw, nthposition, Ontario Review, Orlando Sentinel, Painted Bride, Pequod, Prairie Fire, Prism International, Radical Society, Rampike, Slope, and others in Canada, the United States, Australia, and Germany. George is also a regular reviewer for several publications, including the Globe and Mail. He is former Poetry Editor for the Literary Review of Canada and is a contributing editor for several journals and magazines. After a long tenure as Associate Editor for Maisonneuve Magazine he has recently stepped back to Contributing Editor in an effort to get more creative work done. He won the 2003 New York Festivals Radio and Television Award for Best Writing for his poem “Anniversary: A Personal Inventory” (commissioned by CBC Radio) and has been nominated for a Pushcart Prize (2003). In 2006 he won a Gertrude Stein Award in Innovative Poetry from the PIP project at Green Integer Press. He has also won awards from the Canada Council for the Arts, the Ontario Arts Council, and the Toronto Arts Council. His first play for children, The Swan Chronicles, was produced in Manhattan by Locomotion Dance Theatre in 2003, and he currently sits on the Board for One Little Goat Theatre Company (NYC/Toronto). He has been on the part time poetry faculty at New School University in New York City and formerly taught at Humber College in Toronto. Currently, George Murray is the editor of Bookninja.com and is working on a book of new poems (coming in spring 2007) and some translations.