In telling their story, Michael Chabon’s masterly technique is deftly applied, yet with such subtlety that a casual reader might not notice — the way it’s supposed to be.
The title refers to aging — how an old man’s every third thought is of death, quoting Prospero in when he is planning to return to Milan, “Where every third thought shall be of my grave.” The main character is an elderly author who remains upbeat and energetic, reflecting, “That still gives First and Second Thoughts to get stuff done in.” The irrepressible John Barth chronicles life’s late stages with the same crafty sleight-of-hand and bawdy gusto he brought to portraying youth — when it might be said that every third thought was of another end. His writing is accomplished in stolen hours, with the aid of earplugs and amphetamines.) John Barth blossomed into his own mature style with in 1960 — highly intelligent and deeply learned, yet somehow warm and friendly, darkly comic and satirical — and always with a light-hearted carnality that might be dubbed “satyrical.” Since then Mr.
Barth has produced a steady monument of works large and small, all interwoven with mythology, history, magic realism, unconventional techniques, and dark or ribald humor. Michael Chabon (2012) Michael Chabon was born in 1963, placing him among the generation of authors coming into their maturity right now.
So, wishing to give each of them its due nod from Bubba’s Book Club, I will attack the list alphabetically, with a brief description.
For these are all books that I genuinely loved, and wanted to write about, for one reason or another. , John Barth (2011) Even into his early eighties (born 1930), the long-reigning master of postmodernism (hipsters call it “po-mo,” or even “pomo”) demonstrates his endurance as a playful-yet-profound observer and contemplator of humanity and life. Barth describes a young writer in a small house in Upstate New York with a full teaching load and a young family.
The sale will pit Tidewater against Shaver Transportation Co.
in another line of business, transporting river pilots and maneuvering large cargo vessels in and out of ports.
In addition, I notice with surprise and delight that every single one is by a living author, all but one published within the last decade.
That says a great deal about my feelings toward the state of modern fiction. But still, that is a daunting number of books to face up to writing about.
Over two hundred years ago, the great scholar and wit Dr.
Johnson said, “No one but a blockhead ever wrote except for money.” However, he spent nine years working on the first great dictionary of the English language, and he didn’t do for money. ) My list of the past year’s literary favorites now numbers twenty-one titles, nearly all of them novels.
I number several of his novels among my “dearest favorites” (seems the right descriptor), perhaps especially dwell among the select “rereadable” list. Some are in full flight, confidently wielding the experience and skill they have gained, yet maintaining their youthful enthusiasm — writing for the love of it, perhaps the published when he was just 25, was followed by great success (Pulitzer Prize, major motion pictures), and he is still aiming higher and wider.