Tuesday, January 27, 2009

John Updike

Well, crap. The man was in his late 70s, so it's not like this qualifies as shocking news (Bernie Mac dying at 50: that was a surprising death). And I didn't know the man, so it's not like this is a personal loss for me, either. Still, this bums me out.

The Harry "Rabbit" Angstrom series will always be among my favorites. It's amazing that most of us liked and even cared about the main character, even if he was one of the most immature, selfish, and sometimes hurtful SOBs in all of popular fiction. I've only known two people who've read the first novel, Rabbit, Run , and couldn't stand Rabbit... maybe the rest of us who cheered for him are just as twisted as Rabbit (well, actually, I guess that goes without saying in my case... which was part of Updike's point, it would seem).

Among his lesser known novels, I've been most impressed by (and highly recommend) Toward the End of Time (Updike does post-Apocalyptic sci-fi?!?) and A Month of Sundays. I recently picked up a beat up, dog-eared copy of The Centaur, which started out terrifically but was just a bit too deep for a time when I really wanted/needed a comedy. I guess I need to pull that one back out and give it a second shot.

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