The Anatomy of Influence: Literature as a Way of Life

Gnostic assembler and defender of the Western literary canon, Harold Bloom at age eighty shows no sign of slowing down or banking his intellectual embers, as he here anatomizes the vast rivers of literature that have fed into and enriched his personal ocean, showing us how great works of fiction inform each other and, most tellingly, one man's life.

April 16: ""Blue pottery vases and bowls for flowers are most attractive, and certain blue books...will repeat and emphasize color."

Donna Tartt's The Goldfinch is the winner of the 2014 Pulitzer Prize for Fiction. James Parker calls this Dickensian coming-of-age novel "an enveloping…