Monday, May 10, 2010


The Fall Dalkey Archive catalog arrives and I noticed that my book GOING TO PATCHOGUE has disappeared from the list. THE CORPSE DREAM OF N. PETKOV remains within the archive in its hardcover form.

When GOING TO PATCHOGUE was published by Dalkey Archive in 1992 it had to be quickly reprinted as the publisher has under-estimated its appeal. The book was favorable reviewed in the New York Times, the Chicago Tribune, the Los Angeles Times, The Village Voice and Newsday. The Washington Post ran a stupid review of it buried in a weekday edition. There were articles about the book and the author in both the New York Times and in Newsday. It has been written about in a number of critical books since was seen to be part of something called Irish American literature.

So it can be said the book has a little critical bibliography attached to it.

Now it has disappeared from the Dalkey Archive.

At one time Dalkey Archive was concerned with rescuing books that had disappeared such as Season at Coole by Michael Stephens, Cadenza by Ralph Cusack, Splendide-Hotel by Gilbert Sorrentino and others.

Early on, Dalkey Archive began to publish new books and GOING TO PATCHOGUE was one of the first and so appeared in hardcover as that was seen as a way to publish new books. They also published Kenneth Tindall’s BANKS OF THE SEA but that book has also disappeared though it has not really been reviewed anywhere and DA early on gave up on it. Northwestern University Press in 2000 published a paperback version of PETKOV as it seemed to fit into their then interest in Eastern Europe.

A melancholy note. While Dalkey Archive remains a very important publisher and both of my books helped form their history and credibility, it is still sad for me to see readers deprived of GOING TO PATCHOGUE that defines in some ways the experience of travel to exotic places, that reveals the shape of that voyage, that…

The Village of Patchogue--- as such a place does exist--- does not have a government agency to help pay for the republishing of GOING TO PATCHOGUE.

So unlike most of the books that Dalkey Archive is publishing these days--- at the behest of among others the Slovenian, Estonian, Israeli, Finnish, Dutch governments--- GOING TO PATCHOGUE will be temporarily residing in a place even the Roman Catholic Church has placed under suspicion: limbo.