Item description for Saul Bellow: Novels 1944-1953: Dangling Man, The Victim, and The Adventures of Augie March (Library of America) by Saul Bellow...
Overview Celebrates the fiftieth anniversary of "The Adventures of Augie March," and reflects the mid-twentieth-century's psychological turmoil from more inhibited times in a volume that also includes "The Victim" and "Dangling Man."
Publishers Description Saul Bellow's rare talent has not only earned critical accolades, including the Nobel Prize, it has also made his books perennial bestsellers. Now, in a historic collector's edition celebrating the 50th anniversary of the classic The Adventures of Augie March, readers will rediscover the novels that laid the foundation for Bellow's towering career.
The comic tour-de-force The Adventures of Augie March (1953) introduced to American literature a startlingly original expressiveness-uninhibited, jazzy, infused with Yiddishisms and Depression-era voices. Ebullient irony bears Bellow's prose aloft. March comes of age in a Chicago bustling with characters as large and vital as the city itself, and his travels abroad lead him through love's byways and the disappointments of vanishing youth. Martin Amis calls it "the Great American Novel" for its "fantastic inclusiveness, its pluralism, its qualmless promiscuity. . . . Everything is in here."
Bellow's sparer first two novels possess a more Flaubertian precision. Dangling Man (1944) penetrates the psychology of a jobless man's anxiousness as he awaits draft orders. The Victim (1947), an increasingly nightmarish story of one man's extraordinary claims on a casual acquaintance, explores our obligations to others and the unfathomable workings of chance. After a half century, Bellow's earliest novels remain as fresh, incisive, and entertaining as ever. Included in this edition are helpful notes and a chronology of the author's life.
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Est. Packaging Dimensions: Length: 1" Width: 5" Height: 8" Weight: 1.48 lbs.
Release Date Sep 15, 2003
Publisher Library of America
ISBN 1931082383 ISBN13 9781931082389
Availability 0 units.
More About Saul Bellow
Saul Bellow was praised for his vision, his ear for detail, his humor, and the masterful artistry of his prose. Born of Russian Jewish parents in Lachine, Quebec in 1915, he was raised in Chicago. He received his Bachelor's degree from Northwestern University in 1937, with honors in sociology and anthropology, and did graduate work at the University of Wisconsin. During the Second World War he served in the Merchant Marines. His first two novels, Dangling Man (1944) and The Victim (1947) are penetrating, Kafka-like psychological studies. In 1948 he was awarded a Guggenheim Fellowship and spent two years in Paris and traveling in Europe, where he began his picaresque novel The Adventures of Augie March, which went on to win the National Book Award for fiction in 1954. His later books of fiction include Seize the Day (1956); Henderson the Rain King (1959); Mosby's Memoirs and Other Stories (1968); Mr. Sammler's Planet (1970); Humboldt's Gift (1975), which won the Pulitzer Prize; The Dean's December (1982); More Die of Heartbreak (1987); Theft (1988); The Bellarosa Connection (1989);The Actual (1996); Ravelstein (2000); and, most recently, Collected Stories(2001). Bellow has also produced a prolific amount of non-fiction, collected in To Jerusalem and Back, a personal and literary record of his sojourn in Israel during several months in 1975, and It All Adds Up, a collection of memoirs and essays. Bellow's many awards include the International Literary Prize for Herzog, for which he became the first American to receive the prize; the Croix de Chevalier des Arts et Lettres, the highest literary distinction awarded by France to non-citizens; the B'nai B'rith Jewish Heritage Award for "excellence in Jewish Literature"; and America's Democratic Legacy Award of the Anti-Defamation League of B'nai B'rith, the first time this award has been made to a literary personage. In 1976 Bellow was awarded the Nobel Prize for Literature "for the human understanding and subtle analysis of contemporary culture that are combined in his work." Stanley Crouch's books include Notes of a Hanging Judge, The All-American Skin Game (Nominated for the National Book Award), and a novel, Don't the Moon Look Lonesome. He has received the Whiting Writer's Award and a MacArthur Foundation "genius" award.
Saul Bellow lived in Brookline, in the state of Massachusetts. Saul Bellow was born in 1915 and died in 2005.
Reviews - What do customers think about Saul Bellow: Novels 1944-1953: Dangling Man, The Victim, and The Adventures of Augie March (Library of America)?
The opening novels of an American Master Mar 25, 2007
The 'Library of America' has wisely chosen to present the reader with the major works of Bellow.The three works presented in this opening volume are his first novels, and include his breakthrough book. "The Adventures of Augie March". This is the book which put Bellow on the literary map in a big way. Its famous opening," I am an American, Chicago born" was the introduction to a long vital comic romp in which the adventures of character and plot are complemented , or rather invigorated by the play of ideas. My own preference is not for the works presented here, but rather for the middle aged Bellow of "Seize the Day" and "Herzog". Yet for anyone interested in tracing the overall development of Bellow these novels are essential.
Cannot Recommend as a Starting Point for Bellow Dec 17, 2005
I am a Bellow fan and have read most of his novels.
In case you are new to Bellow, his novels reflect his life, his writings, and his five marriages during his five active decades of writing. He hit his peak as a writer around the time of "Augie March" in 1953 and continued through to the Pulitzer novel "Humbolt's Gift" in 1973. He wrote from the early 1940s through to 2000. His novels are written in a narrative form, and the main character is a Jewish male, usually a writer but not always, and he is living in either in New York or Chicago. Bellow wrote approximately 13 novels plus other works. Bellow progressed a long way as a writer over the five decades. The early novels "Dangling Man" and "The Victim" were written 25 years before his peak. Those were heavy slow reads. "Dangling Man" is often boring, and Bellow was in search of his writing style in that period of the 1940s. Some compare his style in "Dangling Man" with Dostoevsky's "Notes from the Underground." Having read both I would say that "Notes" is brilliant while "Dangling Man" is at best average and sometimes a bit boring.
That brings us to the present book: "Novels from 1944-1953." I am a Bellow fan, and when I started I bought the present book first. In retospect that was a mistake, because this collection has his two worst novels. "Augie March" is his first big novel, but "Dangling Man" - is among his worst. Even Bellow himself was critical of that novel in later years. I prefer almost any of the later novels such as the masterpiece "Herzog" or "Humbolt's Gift" or "Mr. Sammler's Planet" or his last book and light read "Ravelstein." Some disagree and think that his early works are compact, well written, and his finest works. As a general reader, I thought the 1960s and 1970s works were much better and so did most critics. Bellow thought his best and most difficult to write book was his 1964 masterpiece "Herzog."
This is not the starting point for a Bellow reader.
"The Victim" Oct 16, 2005
Bellow, Saul, The Victim. 1947. New York: Library of America, 2003. This novel, Bellow's second to be published, is more of a "head" piece than "Dangling Man" or "Augie March." Asa Leventhal, the thickset, serious-minded copy editor whose wife is seemingly forever out of town, has a weak ego and an even weaker coping mechanism for stress. He is talked into believing that he once injured a now-drunken friend of a friend while at a party, a character named Allbee, who stalks him, accuses him of ruining his life, belligerently invites himself into Leventhal's apartment, and demands all sorts of favors to "clear the slate," all the while slinging anti-Semitic shots from his supposedly superior social position as a descendant of the New England Puritans. Why Leventhal puts up with this is the problem of the novel, and none of his friends can figure him out. A subplot concerning the illness of a young nephew, and some back story, fills out the book. I sympathized with Leventhal but criticize Bellow for never bringing him really to life. What I found more enjoyable were the descriptions and scenes of New York in the 40s, set in a Gatsby-like unending heat wave and bringing back memories of my first trip there in 1949. But that's just something that satisfied me and it isn't enough.
Undisputably worthy of recognition and respect Oct 8, 2003
Bellow: Novels 1944-1953 collects three novels by renowned author Saul Bellow: "Dangling Man"; "The Victim"; and "The Adventures Of Augie March". These three literary works distinguished Bellow as a great writer of the postwar era and set the groundwork for his intellectual pursuits. Exploring the human psyche, the brutal vagaries of chance, coming of age in the harsh Depression era, and more, these enduringly popular novels have stood the literary test of time and are undisputably worthy of recognition and respect. Published on non-acid paper specifically necessary for a "shelf life" of many decades, Bellow: Novels 1944-1953 is an essential part of any academic or community library collection.