Episode 181 — Tao Lin (Part 2)


Tao Lin is the guest. His new novel, Taipei, is now available from Vintage Contemporaries.

The New York Observer says

Tao Lin [is] an excellent writer of avant-garde fiction. His new novel is his most mature work, and follows a young New York writer to Taipei, where he must reconcile his family’s roots with the haze of MDMA, texts and tweets that he’s been living in. Mr. Lin has refined his deadpan prose style here into an icy, cynical, but ultimately thrilling and unique literary voice.

And Blake Butler says

The insane level of scrutiny of everyday personal behavior in Taipei feels somewhere between that of Andy Warhol and a young, bored Patrick Bateman. All the strange modernity we’ve come to expect from Tao Lin—alienation, obsession, social confusion, drugs, the internet, sex, food, death—is rendered here with a calm intuition, somehow distant and metaphysical at once, brutally honest and avoidant, touching and monotonic, like getting sewn inside a mask of your own face. And as can also always be expected of the author, it is mesmerizing, sharp, singularly him, a work of vision so relentless it forces most any reader to respond.

Monologue topics: tweets, Denver, water, Matt Bell, TNB Book Club, In the House Upon the Dirt between the Lake and the Woods.