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When violence erupts on the streets of Paris in May 1968, a hapless international film crew finds itself stranded during the shooting of a preposterous low-budget blue movie about notorious 18th century erotic poet John Wilmot, the Earl of Rochester. A deadpan and digressive behind-the-scenes catalog of the actors, filmmakers, bystanders, and subjects involved in this movie, Rose Alley is also a fantastical and venomous love letter to French film and literature, obsessive collectors, pornography, language, revolution, misanthropy, the joys of cross-cultural misunderstanding, and other peculiar objects of affection. As Harry Mathews writes, “you have no excuse not to read this book.”

Jeremy M. Davies was born in Brooklyn. He is an editor at Dalkey Archive Press in Urbana-Champaign, Illinois.

from Harry Mathews: “Jeremy M. Davies has written a literally overwhelming book: the historical Rose Alley was the scene of Dryden’s brutal ambush by hirelings of the Earl of Rochester, and each chapter of Davies’s book appropriately ambushes the reader, not with brutality but with wit, irresistable ingenuity, and a stupefying narrative abundance that propels us from one sizzling and often hilarious surprise to the next. You have no excuse for not reading this book.”

from Steve Katz: “Read this book. Jeremy Davies sets his ‘tale’ in 1968 Paris during the student riots. A film crew works on a movie of violent events that happened in the 18th century between poet laureate John Dryden and the erotic versifier, the Earl of Rochester. Each chapter treats one of the characters, so the book presents like a photogravure. Here’s the editor, director, actors, and etc. They are revealed as if a handsome bird shows us one tail feather at a time until the whole tail is told. The static qualities of the narration, persistently digressive, play against these explosive events and violent story. This disjunct creates a potent silence. The real action becomes the reader responding to Mr. Davies’s sentences. The delight is to slow down. He is an impeccable stylist who creates a richness full of Nabokovean Pynchonistics, totally original, dressed in wacky erudition.”

“A story told ‘in the best possible way.'” Jeremy Davies’s 
Rose Alley reviewed in the Brooklyn Rail

Excellent A.D. Jameson review in Golden Handcuffs

Review by Blake Butler for Bookslut

Review of Rose Alley in The Collagist

Review at Seminary Co-op Bookstore

A.D. Jameson on Rose Alley

Rose Alley reviewed in Rain Taxi (print only)

Jeremy Davies interview with Lily Huoang

Rose Alley
Jeremy M. Davies
$15.95; 192 pages
ISBN 978-1933996-13-4

 

 

 
 

Marfa Book Company

Marfa Book Company


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Partner: Hangar Bar

Partner: Hangar Bar


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