This brilliant classic from Nobel laureate Saul Bellow is as resonant today as when it was first published almost three decades ago, as it tells the poignant story of two men who struggle to reconcile their desires with the paths their lives have taken.
When Kenneth Trachtenberg leaves his home in Paris to move to the Midwest and live closer to his uncle, Benn Crader, a world-renowned botanist, he soon discovers that he and his uncle have quite a bit in common, especially where the opposite sex is concerned. Benn, whose studies have taken him around the world, is still seeking a sense of fulfillment after his first marriage ends. He goes from one affair to the next, but instead of finding the satisfaction he craves, he falls ever deeper into a well of despair. Believing a settled existence is the answer, Benn marries again, and sets into motion a host of new torments.
And as Kenneth contends with his own issues surrounding his peculiar lady-friend Treckie, the two men are left wondering why talented, intelligent people inevitably fall "knee-deep in the garbage of a personal life."
About the Author
Saul Bellow's dazzling career as a novelist has been marked with numerous literary prizes, including the 1976 Nobel Prize, and the Gold Medal for the Novel. His other books include The Adventures of Augie March, Herzog, More Die of Heartbreak, Mosby's Memoirs and Other Stories, Mr Sammler's Planet, Seize The Day and The Victim. Saul Bellow died in 2005.
Date of Birth:June 10, 1915
Date of Death:April 5, 2005
Place of Birth:Lachine, Quebec, Canada
Place of Death:Brookline, Massachusetts
Education:University of Chicago, 1933-35; B.S., Northwestern University, 1937
Most Helpful Customer Reviews
I took this back to the library in the end, I only got about halfway through. It wasn't that I didn't think it was well written, I thought it was beautifully written, it was that I just didn't much care what happened next, so it was never the book I chose to pick up...