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Jack the Modernist
by Robert Glück
Set in the early 1980's, Robert Glück's first novel, Jack the Modernist, has become a classic of postmodern gay fiction. Bob is excited and lonely. He meets and pursues the elusive Jack, a director who is able to transform others without altering himself. Bob goes to the baths, gossips on the phone, goes to a bar, thinks about werewolves, has an orgasm, and discovers a num ...more
Paperback, 166 pages
Published April 1st 1995 by Serpent's Tail
(first published January 1st 1985)
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About ten years ago I'd buy up anything that went into the bargain section of B&N or Borders from High Risk Books, just because they put out a couple of the Stewart Home books, and I was hoping to find another writer like him. Time after time after time I was burned by this buying pattern. I don't know why it didn't ever dawn on me that all I was getting each time was 'edgy' gay and lesbian fiction, all of which seemed to be on the verge of painful to read, but I kept buying them. I was ...more
I like that the french flaps of this edition feature a pattern of flying penises. Just in case, you know, you didn't realize this book was about a gay man. Anyway, superb, read a lot about Gluck by way of Bruce Boone and was delighted to get my hands on this. I wasn't disappointed at all.
Some marvelous, evocative, practically priceless language and lines buried in a lot of wanking (yes, both literal and figurative, and even the literal is somewhat tiresome even though usually I'm very much the avid voyeur about gay boy sex.)I'll put some quotes in soon, though--very behind on my quotes.
I don't know what to make of this. There's love and obsession, the chronicle of a relationship, some anonymous gay sex, then there's werewolves, Mickey Mouse, writing workshops, and overall a lot of disjunction. I liked it. Gluck has wonderful images: "Our silence was a tennis ball tossed high in the center of the room."
Born in Cleveland, poet, fiction writer, editor, and New Narrative theorist Robert Glück grew up there and in Los Angeles. He was educated at the University of California, Los Angeles, the University of Edinburgh, the College of Art in Edinburgh, and the University of California, Berkeley, where he earned a BA. He also studied writing in New York City workshops with poet Ted Berrigan and earned an ...moreMore about Robert Glück...