The Partisan

Atheneum, 1993 - 261 pàgines
1 Ressenya
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With his first novel, The Plagiarist, Benjamin Cheever was lauded by reviewers everywhere for his "witty dialogues, memorable characters, mini-zingers ending each episode" (Newsweek). Cheever now fulfills the promise of that first novel with The Partisan, a story narrated by Nelson, a young film student at New York University. At the center are his "Aunt and Uncle" and his sister Nar (short for Narcissus). Uncle, Jonas Collingwood, is the revered and crusty author of "eighteen spectacularly gloomy novels. The critics were impressed with his eye for the telling detail. The public hadn't noticed". This cozy if dysfunctional quartet lead a cloistered life in the New York suburbs, with Nelson dreaming of owning a car, Aunt burning dinners, Jonas banging out his novels in the root cellar, and Nar charming men and desiring a horse. Then an article appears in the Herald Tribune hinting that Jonas's last book was a thinly veiled memoir of the years he spent with the resistance in Italy during the war. This gives Jonas just the right sort of image ("the novelist who shot men") to promote him as "The Hemingway of Westchester". With this newly found fame comes a buyout of his publishers by a German conglomerate, Ich Spreche Nicht Viel Deutsch ("best known for the manufacture of common household tranquilizers"), which offers him a huge advance to write his memoirs about being a partisan in Italy and thus solidify his new literary mythic status. In the wake of sudden and comical amounts of attention and money comes a fan bearing gifts with a certain (to Nelson) sinister intent. And so the stage is set for complications, revelations of family secrets, and much, much laughter. Written with the sameaccomplished style and humor that characterized The Plagiarist, Benjamin Cheever's The Partisan also reveals something new and rewarding - an even greater (and rarer) depth of feeling and concern, sure signs of growth in an already celebrated writer.

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LibraryThing Review

Revisió d'Usuari  - SeriousGrace - LibraryThing

Right away Cheever wants you to laugh out loud. How could you not with an opening like this? "That was the summer I worked for the Westchester Commons. I was in love with Amy Snodgrass Rose. Amy was ... Llegeix la ressenya completa


Revisió d'Usuari  - Kirkus

Once again, Cheever (The Plagiarist, 1992) chronicles life with a distinguished writer—in a novel that's even more diffuse than his first. Not nearly as funny as it thinks it is, this hurried fiction ... Llegeix la ressenya completa


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