Taylor, Benjamin

Taylor author photo.jpg

Benjamin Taylor is the author of a book of essays, Into the Open, and a novel, Tales Out of School, which received the 1996 Harold Ribalow Prize.  His work appears in The Los Angeles Times Book Review, The Georgia Review, and Threepenny Review, among others, and has been frequently anthologized.  



Naples Declared, Putnam, June 2012 (Non-fiction)


“[Taylor] wears his formidable erudition lightly as he cites classical authors and 20th-century travel writers such as Norman Douglas with equal zest and acuity…Though this is a highly personal book, the Neapolitan spirit is palpable: “the being-visible-now, the quasi-divinity that flows from a fundamentally theatrical sense of life,” as Taylor puts it in a characteristically ecstatic, evocative assessment.” – Kirkus Reviews, starred

“[a] beguiling travelogue . . . Steeped in off-hand erudition and raptly attuned to the city’s scruffy allure, Taylor makes a charming guide to an under-toured city.” – PW

“A witty amble through the purgatorial realms of Naples: a city of contrasts, much squalor, and astonishing natural and man-made beauty. “ – PW’s Top 10: Travel

“Scholarly and insightful and balanced with wit and levity, this is written with an effortless poeticism. It has drawn comparisons with Bruce Chatwin’s In Patagonia and Eleanor Clark’s Rome and a Villa, but there is the potential for cross-genre (and media) appeal as it shares a cinematic pace with Richard Linklater’s Before Sunrise and Before Sunset films as well as Chris Marker’s Sans Soleil.” – Library Journal

“Benjamin Taylor […] pays homage to a beautiful yet hard-edge city […] serv[ing] up some morbidly entertaining nuggets of Neapolitan history.” – New York Times Sunday Book Review

“A rich, multi-dimensional tour of Naples, most brilliant, battered, and bewildering of cities, here fixed to the page with wit and elan. Splendid.” –  Pulitzer Prize winning author Stacy Schiff

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