The Temple of Gold
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The Temple of Gold

3.88 of 5 stars 3.88  ·  rating details  ·  494 ratings  ·  48 reviews
Acclaimed for such Academy Award—winning screenplays as Butch Cassidy and the Sundance Kid and such thrillers as Marathon Man, not to mention the bestselling classic The Princess Bride, William Goldman stands as one of the most beloved writers in America. But long before these triumphs, he caused a sensation with his brilliant first novel, a powerful story of reckless yout...more
Paperback, 205 pages
Published October 2nd 2001 by Ballantine Books (first published 1957)
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mark monday
there is something so annoying yet so forgiveable about a first novel that is less about adventure and more about how the author thinks they have discovered What Life Is Truly All About. these kinds of novels often combine youthful idealism and cynicism in an awkward way that manages to be both refreshingly honest and irritatingly pretentious. oh where is that golden temple of satisfaction that we all strive so aimlessly towards? oh isn't life such a sad disappointment after all? where is this l...more
Eugene Ahn
Better than Catcher in the Rye. There, I said it.
Linda Robinson
I read this book in 1970, and it had an enormous impact on me. I'm not going to read it again because I don't want it out of time. J. D. Salinger just died, and I won't reread Franny and Zooey either. I'd rather remember them both as the most amazing books I've read in my life and leave the books and their brilliantly timely authors there.
Joe
I read it around 1962 when I was in high school. A certain passage has stuck with me ever since. A new boy moves in next door, same age as our 12-year-old protagonist, and here is the first meeting:
"I hear you're an absolute angel," I said to him that morning.
"I hear you're not," he came right back, which threw me, because I didn't know how the news had spread so fast.

A wonderfully-described friendship grows through junior high and high school. Then 43 pages later on their last night before part...more
Sean Noga
Goldman, W. (2001). The temple of gold. New York City, New York: Ballantine Books.

The Temple of Gold is an incredible coming of age story about a young man named Ray Trevitt. This novel captures the angst and dilemmas people often face when growing up and is quite similar to the classic novel, The Cather and the Rye. Ray is a young man growing up in the 1950's and goes through many tragic, but life changing experiences. Ray gets drunk and kills his best friend by accident as he drives home drunk...more
Sonia
Trovarsi di fronte ad un romanzo di William Goldman è un'esperienza da vivere.
Sappiamo che si tratta di pagine scritte dall'autore de Il maratoneta, da cui fu tratto lo splendido film con Dustin Hoffman e Laurence Olivier, e che dalla sua penna sono nate le sceneggiature vincitrici dell'Oscar di Butch Cassidy e Tutti gli uomini del presidente.
Se poi si aggiunge che quel suo libro per ragazzi, La principessa sposa, non è altro che La storia fantastica, quel film che da bambini ci aveva fatto sog...more
Geoff
(view spoiler)...more
Sarah
This review has been hidden because it contains spoilers. To view it, click here.
Gregg
Goldman's first novel, I'm told, is more of a literary attempt than his later suspense and adventure novels. I wanted to like it, but I struggled. The protagonist is sort of a next-level Holden Caulfield, the son of a classics professor, who meets his best friend, goes to college, gets drafted, returns home, gets married, and more or less loses it all. His voice comprises the novel's delivery, and while it's an entertaining voice, it's not enough to hold the story together. I wish I could do Mr....more
Jabe
I wanted to love this. I'm such a big fan of Butch & Sundance and the Princess Bride, so I had high expectations for this, despite it being Goldman's first published work.

I enjoyed his personal story about the publication of the book, and I thought the first quarter of the book was pretty good. It felt like it should have been a short story that ended there, though. It didn't really do much for me after that.
Robert
I read this many years ago, and just had occasion to think about it. I liked this and another book by Goldman, "Boys and Girls Together" very much. I don't quite think either qualifies for four stars, but I would consider 3.5.
Alex
Maybe the best novel of its kind that I've read. A coming of age story with all the trappings you'd expect (sex, drinking, episodic storytelling, humor and tragedy) and a heavy dose of excellent writing and character work. William Goldman does the majority if his character development through dialogue, which makes sense given his later Oscar. Even minor characters that only stick around for a scene or so get the full benefit of his spectacular words. It really scares anybody with thoughts of bec...more
Keegan Allen
This is one of the darkest books I have ever read.
Suzieq
This review has been hidden because it contains spoilers. To view it, click here.
Nade
The Temple of Gold is a great book, genuine and simple. I loved it because of the way the main character, Ray, describes what's happening to him. The author's style really captures the way life twists and tuns and drag everyone along. It was recommended to me as a book similar to Kerouac's On the Road. I don't think they are alike, but it resembles a little The Catcher in the Rye. The Temple of Gold is a pleasant and easy read that teaches you many things.
Ivelina
I read this book many years ago. It was borrowed and after that I haven't been able to find it. I remember I loved it a lot and thought it was much better than Catcher in the Rye. After so long i still have very vivid memories about it - think I can't say about other books that I have read and liked so long ago.
I would like to reread it now, but am somewhat afraid if I will like it as much as that first time.
Shane
This was really fantastic, only missing a full 5 star review because of some minor issues. It is absolutely hilarious no doubt, but I was hoping for a much more emotional connection, which never came to be, that, and Raymond can be a real jerk sometimes. :)

Still though, this was a fun read that had me laughing out loud quite a few times, and is wonderfully written.
Gary Lee
Seems like it would make a nice substitute for Catcher in the Rye; but I only made it about 60 pages into it before I put it down. I don't mean that to sound like a problem with the book -- what I read was actually pretty good -- I just got sidetracked by comics and travel plans and couldn't find the inspiration to finish reading it.
Brian Wilson
I actually really enjoyed this book. It was William Godman's first full-length novel and it reads like a first try. That doesn't mean it's bad. You can just really tell that he is finding his voice. It is similar to Catcher in the Rye, but only somewhat. I've read both and, honestly, of the two, this is the one that I would read again.
james
Quick read, i read it in a day (a slow day i guess...)

Goldman's first published novel, definitely an easy read, but worthwhile at the same time. My only complaint was the ending, though we had closure more or less, left me wanting to know what happened next.

I think any comparison to Catcher in the Rye is awfully loose...
Serina
I really enjoyed this book. But Goldman was in his twenties and writing in the 1950s (maybe it was his first book) - and that really shows when reading the book now in the 2010s. The female characters are paper thin, not understood and badly treated. But the writing is good and the dialogue is very snappy.
jeanie
I really wanted to like his book, as The Princess Bride is perhaps my favorite. The protagonist was a jerk. I just did not like the way he treated girls or his friends, or anybody, really.
Ida Rand
i loved this book. it was nice and short and easy to read. i don't know though, i haven't read it in a long time, but i remember thinking it was cool like catcher in the rye. like i said, i read it 20 something years ago so i could be totally off, it might be about puppies.
Ange
Dec 30, 2013 Ange added it
Shelves: not-reading
Jenny-Lynn & Jeannie both gave it a "2" I understand the character development when the wrong way.
Desira
Not much missing from this book. I really loved it: fast read, great voice (something like catch 22) and just winds its way you don't know where. Some unexpectedly sweet moments, and lots of realism.
Karin
My Mom gave me her William Goldman collection when I was in High School. I think the books I have are original. I loved this book. It was so long ago, but I felt like such a grown up reading it.
Marla
Never have a read a guy's journal before...not until now! Read just like I would imagine it would read...from mundane events to over the top events!! Captivating & quite the page turn it was!!
Rob
Beautiful, endearing, heart-wrenching, moody, sorrowful, a triumph. Even after all this years this book is still very effective. It should be read by everybody.
Steve Tornello
It's a first novel. Frustrating in an incomplete lead character but taken aback at the potential of what the writer will become. In this xase, we know.
Emma
Read this in high school and left a big impression on me. I still remember the line about forever being a bunch of temporaries all strung together.
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Goldman grew up in a Jewish family in Highland Park, Illinois, a Chicago suburb, and obtained a BA degree at Oberlin College in 1952 and an MA degree at Columbia University in 1956.His brother was the late James Goldman, author and playwright.

William Goldman had published five novels and had three plays produced on Broadway before he began to write screenplays. Several of his novels he later used...more
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