Books Acquired Recently: Salt Lake City Edition

I am visiting Salt Lake City for the holidays, and over the past few days I’ve visited two of my favorite bookstores in the city, The King’s English, where I bought Lessing’s novel, and Central Book Exchange, where I bought Kosinski’s and Poe’s books. Kosinski, Jerzy. The Painted Bird. 1965. New York: Bantam, 1972. IContinue reading “Books Acquired Recently: Salt Lake City Edition”

Nicholson Baker’s U and I

Nicholson Baker’s 1991 long essay U and I on his obsession with John Updike is rife with the smooth, profoundly observational prose which make him one of my favorite fiction writers, though it is also marred by two deficiencies which make it my second-least favorite book of his that I’ve read. (My least favorite isContinue reading “Nicholson Baker’s U and I”

Women Readers and the Crisis of the Male Novelist

Elaine Blair has a fantastic article in the current issue of The New York Review of Books (July 12, 2012) about how the fictional trend of oafish male protagonists has evolved from the work of hoary giants such as Philip Roth and John Updike through the work of present-day writers such as Gary Shteyngart andContinue reading “Women Readers and the Crisis of the Male Novelist”

Ann Bannon’s The Marriage

I just finished reading Ann Bannon’s 1960 novel The Marriage. It is the only one of her novels that is not a part of the excellent Beebo Brinker series of lesbian pulp fiction. However, two characters from the series, Laura Landon and Jack Mann, play a major role in it, and it takes place just after theContinue reading “Ann Bannon’s The Marriage”