This started slow for me, but warmed up at the end. I find Stegner somewhat
tiresome for casual reading. He tries too hard to write "lit-er-a-choor". He
is writing a book about a guy who is writing a book about a grandmother who wrote
short stories. Hmmm. He does have one quote that I liked - "He adhered to the
doctrine that when you take something you want, and damn the consequences, then
you had better be ready to accept whatever consequences ensue." If you are a
fan of Barbara Kingsolver, you will probably like this one.
This is only nominally a civil war story. Mostly it is charater
sketches of the indiviuals involved in the Battle of Gettysburg. It
is based in fact and history; Shaara only imagines the thoughts and motives
of the charaters. Reccomended. As usual, I did a little research around the
book/author. Shaara died soon after this book was published, but his son
Jeffery, has taken up story. Jeffery Shaara has published a prequel and a sequel
to "Angels". The films "Gods and Generals", and "Gettysburg" are based on the
When I started reading this I had the strangest feeling of deja vu that I
had read this before. What I guess is that I scanned it before returning it
to the library a year ago. This was another one I just could not get thru.
Bellow is quite talky and although the story is interesting, it drags along.
This is another one of those "angsty stories about writer". I don't know
enough about new American fiction to tell if Bellow was taking a swipe at
real people in this book.
Short stories from the Black prospective. Not bad, but kind of
artsy in places. Sometimes the stories seem like fragments. He
was the first African American to win the Pulitzer (for the novel).
After reading his bio, I see that he is an academic, which is why
the stories seem to care more about the theme than character development
or a good storyline.
1979? Seriously? These stories seem set in a vague period between 1940 and
1960. Cheever was a newspaper columnist and these stories are little East Coast
vignettes. Some are good, other not. I admit that I did not read all of them
(there are almost 50 in the book). I also found myself thinking about an
ex-girlfriend and her family that grew up on the East coast and summered on
Cape Cod. As a West coaster, I found it hard to make a connection to the stories.
Your mileage may vary.
The 70's was definately a decade where classic storytelling gets lost in the
flurry of introspeciton and breast beating. Hmmmm, it also gave us disco.