Artful, Ali Smith, 2013

A strange and haunting book by a talented and well read literary critic/novelist.  Is it a memoir of a woman whose author/professor husband has died too young leaving her with a disordered desk filled with manuscripts, literary allusions and memories, or is this a novel?  Some of my favorites make cameo appearances (Walter Benjamin, Philip Larkin, Dickens, Lydia Davis, and Katherine Mansfield) in this brilliant riff on grief, time, loss, and the limited ability of writers to create art that captures life, feelings, and loss.  Highly recommended.