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Adventures in Writing, Reading & Book Culture

Books Read Lately

Open by Andre Agassi – USA tennis star writes candidly about his life, a pushy father who pounded tennis into his son, a son who has always hated tennis, life on the road, sexdrugsrock&roll, marriage, love, etc. The ghostwriter did a great job in finding Agassi’s voice, and Agassi is indeed candid (if by candid we mean truthful to the point of being able to self-criticize).

Exit Ghost by Philip Roth – Roth’s final Zuckerman book, bringing his life full circle, as the story mirrors The Ghostwriter, Roth’s first foray with his alter ego. Now Zuck is impotent and incontenant as the result of prostate surgery, and worries about his ability to write because, well, he’s become forgetful, and what write can possibly complete a story if the details of yesterday’s work are lost to the winds? But this is not a depressing book. Quite the opposite, as Zuck finds the ability to take the history of that bygone writer he visited some 60 years ago, and make a bit of a passion play out of marrying of present with past.

Bel Canto by Ann Patchet – the story of a group of presidential kidnappers who storm a Banana Republic embassy, only to find the Prez 86ed the event in favor of his favorite soap opera. Anyway, the bandits decide to take hostages, and then the hostages gain the cultural upper hand. The storyline is hardly believable (in fact not) and the characters thin. I didn’t like it, and didn’t finish it.

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