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Adam Begley

Forfatter af Updike

7+ Works 289 Members 13 Reviews

Værker af Adam Begley

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The Salon.com Reader's Guide to Contemporary Authors (2000) — Redaktør — 347 eksemplarer

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UPDIKE. Just the name conjures up countless hours of reading enjoyment I've had in my life. I first 'discovered' John Updike in 1967, when I picked a paperback of RABBIT, RUN off a rack in the SBX bookstore at CMU. I've been reading him off and on ever since and have probably read at least three dozen of his books, some more than once. In his fifty-plus years of writing, Updike published over sixty books, both fiction and non-fiction, and some poetry as well. So of course I wanted to read about his life, and Adam Begley has captured the man and writer in the most erudite and even-handed manner possible. And Updike was certainly no saint, which is made very clear. Begley makes no bones about the fact that much of his fiction was drawn from his own life. Yes, Updike reveled in the sexual revolution of the sities, and was a serial philanderer and adulterer. Read COUPLES (1969), his breakthrough bestseller, and you will know all about the middle years of his first marriage, the hedonistic Ipswich era. Plenty here too about the man's nearly lifelong connections with The New Yorker. And there were the RABBIT books, and all the Olinger stories, reflecting his PA boyhood and adolescence in Shillington and Plowville. And the Maples stories. And on and on. The last Updike book I read was TERRORIST, something of a departure for him, but nonetheless chilling and, as always, beautifully written. Begley writes about all of these and more, and I felt like I was reading about an old friend revealed, warts and all. And the final chapter, about Updike's final illness and death, made me want to weep. I am so grateful to Adam Begley for all the time he spent writing this book. I loved it. (And, btw, Adam's father is Louis Begley, renowned author of the SCHMIDT novels and other books, something I only realized in reading the Acknowledgements page, although Adam had mentioned very briefly early in the book that Updike had known his father at Harvard.) My very highest recommendation, especially if you were/are an Updike fan.

- Tim Bazzett author of the memoir, BOOKLOVER
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TimBazzett | 6 andre anmeldelser | Jul 22, 2021 |
John Updike is one of my favourite authors, and this is a BRILLIANT biography. Begley intertwines Updike's work with his writing- the level of autobiography in his every novel, poem and short story is brought out vividly, as Begley takes us through his life. From a happy childhood in Shillington, Pennsylvania, child of a not particularly successful teacher father ("The Centaur" !) and an ambitious, literary mother who relocates her family to a rural location ("The Centaur" again!); his time in Harvard, marriage, time in UK, working on the New Yorker ("Bech"!), kids, a rampant social life and yet a solid religious conviction ("Couples" !) As divorce, a broken family, remarriage and old age confront Updike, we again see echoes in the "Rabbit" tetralogy . Of course, I've only read a few of his many works and there are a vast amount of other works which Begley introduces us to, and through which I felt I gained a fair insight into the genial and hugely intelligent Updike.

As remarked on by another reviewer, we do feel a lack of vision into Updike's second marriage; his second wife didn't involve herself in this work (unlike his first ) and it shows.
But overall a truly excellent, erudite but uttely readable work.
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starbox | 6 andre anmeldelser | Jun 15, 2019 |
I am a sucker for literary biographies, and this is a really really good one, on a par with Blake Bailey's Cheever biography. (I am a fan of Updike's work, which helps.) In particular, Updike's relationship with his mother is fascinating.
GaylaBassham | 6 andre anmeldelser | May 27, 2018 |
The jacket text for this book suggests that it will be funny, and show the dangers of clinging to an idea in the face of contradictory evidence. It fails on both counts, at least for me.

I suspect the authors assumed all that the readers would find a kind of point-and-laugh humor in each tiny biography, just as he did. I didn't really see it, but it was the best I could figure he was going for. This book might be more amusing to someone with the authors sense of humor. I just found it sad.

I was also disappointed to see no references, no bibliography, no evidence of why the author is so certain his take on each person is accurate.
… (mere)
hopeevey | 1 anden anmeldelse | May 19, 2018 |



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