Goodbye, Columbus
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Goodbye, Columbus

3.87 of 5 stars 3.87  ·  rating details  ·  8,285 ratings  ·  461 reviews
Inédito hasta hoy en castellano, Goodbye, Columbus es el primer libro de Philip Roth. La novela corta de la que toma el título narra el idilio veraniego de dos jóvenes universitarios. Neil Klugman procede de la parte pobre de Newark, y la preciosa Brenda Patimkin, de la zona residencial. Tal vez por eso, en su apasionada aventura intervienen decisivamente la noción de clas...more
Paperback, Biblioteca Formentor, 368 pages
Published April 10th 2007 by Seix Barral (first published 1959)
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This is his first book. Screw him.
"Curiously, the darkness seemed to have something to do with Harriet, Ron's intended, and I thought for a time that it was simply the reality of Harriet's arrival that had dramatized the passing of time: we had been talking about it and now suddenly it was here — just as Brenda's departure would be here before we knew it." -Goodbye, Columbus

How often do I think of the passing of time in this way, as Roth describes it in this poignant, wistful and utterly beautiful book. "Goodbye, Columbus" alrea...more
Carino il romanzo breve “Goodbye, Columbus”. Un Roth tenero che racconta la storia di un amore estivo tra un ragazzo ebreo di Newark ed una ragazza ebrea molto più americanizzata di lui.
A rendere questo libro unico però sono i cinque racconti che seguono il romanzo breve. In tutti il tema centrale è la fede ebraica. Tutti i personaggi dei racconti si ritrovano a fare i conti con la propria coscienza. Ebrei americani e americanizzati che talvolta si ritrovano faccia a faccia con le proprie radici...more
If Truman Capote’s Breakfast at Tiffany’s is the New York novella about flirting with the city’s upper crust, then Philip Roth’s Goodbye, Columbus is the suburban story for the rest of us.

A coming-of-age story about a summer romance, it plumbs tensions from class, generational, religious, and educational differences, and it does so in a way that is instinctive and visceral. While not the most self-aware, sensitive, or rational, the story’s characters—Neil Klugman, a twenty-three year-old man fro...more
What's yr take on P-Roth? During the hubbub around the recent awarding of a Man Booker prize to Philip Roth, I was moved to revisit him by reading this novella, published when he was 26. "Goodbye, Columbus" was sensitive and fine, complicating my reaction to his prize. I initially sided with Carmen Calil, the Booker judge who abandoned the committee when the two-to-one vote favored Roth. Like Calil, I just can't take a writer seriously if he cannot and will not consider the lives of non-alter-eg...more
Okay, so this is finally happening.


I assumed I'd have some overpowering reaction to this now that I was finally reading it (I only read the novella, not the other stories), but I didn't. Now I guess I get why people like Philip Roth so much: he's a terrific writer, and I enjoyed reading this book. I got a little bored halfway through, nothing serious, but I wasn't as crazy about it as I was at the start and didn't itch to pick it back up when I'd happened to set it down.

I feel embarrassed and...more
Jun 30, 2010 Lobstergirl rated it 3 of 5 stars  ·  review of another edition Recommends it for: Paige Patterson
Shelves: fiction
I needed to read this because it's Roth's urtext, and because I seem to be reading through Roth intermittently but steadily. I didn't exactly enjoy it, though it's certainly well written. It has that youthful angsty atmosphere that permeates many debut romans à clef (like The Bell Jar, The Rachel Papers, The Catcher in the Rye) and it introduces sexual dilemmas which I'm guessing were quite cutting edge in 1959. The five short stories following the novella are severely Jewish (yeshivas and the l...more
When I first read Roth's Portnoy's Complaint in college, I confess that I was socially unable to truly understand it. I wasn't Jewish, I didn't grow up in New Yawk and, lastly, I didn't understand why one wouldn't, apparently like most of the University of Miami population, just go elsewhere. Still the title story is by far my favorite of Roth's stories, one which talks about both social insecurities and mistrust. Unlike others, I saw this as a natural outgrowth of the world, but that's another...more
Scott Rhee
The first-ever book by Philip Roth that I read, in college, for a course in Literature & Film, "Goodbye, Columbus" is a semi-autobiographical story about young love/lust. The movie version of this novella, by the way, kind of sucks. I fell in love with the book and Roth's prose style immediately. I understand why he has been accused of being misogynistic in his writing, and I don't totally disagree, but I am inclined to say that he strikes me more as someone who is simply being honest about...more
Este es el noveno libro de Roth que me leo. Hasta ahora siempre me había quejado de lo mismo, me daba la impresión de que no sabía cerrar bien las historias, de que sus finales nunca eran redondos. Goodbye Columbus, el relato que da nombre al libro, me ha hecho replantearme mi opinión. La historia termina de una manera incluso más abrupta que de costumbre. No se si Roth lo hace aposta o no, pero me doy cuenta ahora de que sus historias suelen empezar también de manera abrupta. Entramos en ellas...more
a book of stories and one novella. the novella is the title piece, "goodbye, columbus" and i think the reason i did not give the book 5 stars is that the novella was not as strong as the stories. that said, it is funny. it is good writing. the characters and situation are relateable. but the stories are where roth shines in my opinion. the first two, "the conversion of the jews" and "defender of the faith" i'd read before, but like any good story, they are both deserving of a second, third, four...more
I wasn't really sure where "Goodbye, Columbus" (the title piece of the collection) was going at first and didn't like any of the characters, but Roth has a special way of making seemingly inconsequential things become transformative and meaningful. I still vehemently disliked the characters at the end, but was somehow touched by them.

Many of the other stories in this collection are similar in this way. The people in the stories themselves aren't significant or even sometimes, likable, but they a...more
This is probably the fourth time I've read this book and every time I do, it feels like I'm reliving falling in love for the first time all over again. I chose Goodbye, Columbus as a read aloud book to share with someone special and hearing or speaking Roth's words made me much more aware of the humor and the cadence of the New Jersey Jewish speech. Aunt Gladys is the Jewish aunt I never had and I want her to nag and fuss over me too.

It is a story about loss and longing, the ending of things, bo...more
for some reason somehow I had received the impression that Roth wasn't really worth it, probably because of the whole misogynistic self-hating Jew thing, and now I feel like I've been lied to? because this was really good?
anyway I didn't mean to read this—I have very many books of my own I have yet to read—but I was inspecting one of my parents' bookcases to settle something regarding john cheever and after that I was pulling some books in and out of shelves as I am wont to do and this was one...more

At last, I am no longer a Philip Roth virgin. He broke out with this collection of the novella, Goodbye, Columbus and five short stories, for which he won the National Book Award in 1960.

The theme of all the pieces is second and third-generation Jews moving from the ghetto into assimilation as Americans. I liked the novella for its characters and plot, though he stole shamelessly from Herman Wouk's Marjorie Morningstar. I fell shamelessly into the love story between Neil Klugman, poor New York C...more
Rooney 1
Patrick Rooney
Professor Bruce Thompson
7 June 2011

Philip Roth’s debut novel, Goodbye, Columbus, is in part a window into secular Jewish life in the fifties era. Twenty-three year-old Neil juggles life and love while tolerating Jewish woes from the immortal (clinging, over-bearing mother figure) to the unique time period, which pits reactionary developments against the first hesitant stirrings of the sexual revolution to come.

Goodbye, Columbus follows Neil’s first love affair, a b...more
Jul 03, 2008 Alexandra rated it 4 of 5 stars  ·  review of another edition Recommends it for: fans of Michael Chabon's early work, shiksas with a fetish, Franny and Zooey fans
Recommended to Alexandra by: Dustin K.
Tenderly rendered. Goodbye, Columbus is a bit exasperating, as I take issue with these young whiny East-coast Jewish male protagonists (Michael Chabon's The Mysteries of Pittsburgh, I'm looking at you) who can't handle the women they're with and so bail on them like the big cry babies they are, but the short stories--especially and forever Eli, The Fanatic--are worth talking about.
I thought the short stories were stronger than the title novella. I listened to this one on my MP3 player, and especially enjoyed the story read by Harlan Ellison, "Defender of the Faith". I also enjoyed the other short stories, but thought "Eli, the Fanatic" was a little dark and didn't share the same comic tone as the other tales.
Anne Sanow
Sometimes young men don't shoot their wad all at once, and this smart, sharp, resonant, ballsy, evocative, emotive, terse, catchy, tuned-in, poetic, aching, EDITED book is one of those times.
“Goodbye, Columbus” ★★★★★
“The Conversion of the Jews” ★★★★
“Defender of the Faith” ★★★★
“Epstein” ★★★★
“You Can’t Tell a Man by the Song He Sings” ★★★★
“Eli, the Fanatic” ★★★★
"A PRIMEIRA VEZ QUE VI A BRENDA, pediu-me que lhe tomasse conta dos óculos. Deu uns passos até à extremidade da prancha de saltos e fitou a piscina com olhos enevoados, até podia estar vazia, que a Brenda, míope como era, não teria dado por nada. Fez uma belíssima entrada na água e, passado um momento, estava a nadar de regresso à margem da piscina, a cabeça, de cabelos curtos e acobreados, erguida no prolongamento de corpo como uma rosa na ponta de um caule comprido."

Goodbye, Columbus conta-nos...more
Dopo aver terminato anche il 6° libro di Roth, posso affermare con assoluta certezza di essere follemente innamorata di questo scrittore.
Roth è uno dei più grandi scrittori che abbia mai avuto la fortuna di leggere e questo libro ne è la dimostrazione chiara e palese.
"Goodbye, Columbus" è la storia di Neil, che vive in un quartiere povero di Newmark e di Brenda che vive nel sobborgo lussuoso di Short Hills. Le loro vite, così diverse, per estrazione sociale e modo di essere si incontreranno e s...more
Maurice J
I loved this book, Roth's first. The novella (and book title) described my life--graduate of Weequahic High School, student at Newark Rutgers, dating a girl in the suburbs, and working part-time at the Newark (NJ) Public Library. The writing in some of the stories was more than evocative of my life growing up in Newark--it literally described the Hebrew school I went to, the neighborhood I grew up in (and even the identical experiences in high school of the Italian kid in gym class whose boxer s...more
Michael Eppelheimer
In his first set of stories, Philip Roth delivers a warts and all, unflinching report of the average American post-war Jewish experience. If you are a fan of Roth you have to read these stories, which clearly point in the direction his amazing body of work went. He was tagged a self-hating Jew after the publication of these stories, but a fearless examination of any culture will reveal the good and the bad, the funny and the sad, and the Jewish culture of these particular times are the perfect v...more
Una buona notizia per tutti, la ristampa di questo Goodbye Columbus che contiene in sè l'esordio di uno dei più grandi romanzieri contemporanei: permette infatti di apprezzare la ariosa e precisissima prosa di Philip Roth ed il disvelarsi in embrione di alcune delle tematiche che caratterizzaranno tutta la sua opera, ma privi dell'amaro e terribile cinismo delle opere mature (che per certi versi ne costituiscono il limite).

Il libro si struttura in un romanzo breve e cinque racconti, e se fin da...more
Everyone thinks Philip Roth, the American mid-century's Saul Bellow, wrote the same book over and over again throughout his career. Most people think that archetypal book is Portnoy's Complaint. I disagree. If each of his books were Portnoy's Complaint material, I would march myself right to my local bookseller and purchase every one of them. I read recently, in a curmudgeonly blog entry, disdaining overrated writers, that Goodbye, Columbus was the only good thing Roth produced, that he began ha...more

So, after Stephen King talked about always having an audio book in progress even as he is reading other books, I decided to give it a try. I do not have the ability to listen to such material while I work, but I loaded Philip Roth's GOODBYE COLUMBUS collection onto my iPod and listened to it while I went to and fro, here and there.

I am a fan of Roth, and have read a handful of material from the various periods of his career. His earliest material, which this represents, has a youthful vitality t...more
How do you best toss a wrench into the glinting noshing gears that power your own cultural hegemony? If you're the freshly-birthed first-born alter ego of Philip Roth, you deny the commodified beauty of Gaugin to a lame old man in order to preserve it for a spirited young Negro boy who refuses to obtain the book through the official channels that he wouldn't able to use anyway since his own people, the same ones your people have already displaced, will devour the fruits of his efforts. Roth's to...more
Anna Huynh
I usually like coming of age stories, such as Goodbye, Columbus, and this one was pretty good, but for some reason, I didn't really end up caring about the characters, so that was why it wasn't really good. I continued on to read his other short stories and my favorite ones are The Conversion of the Jews because it took me back to a time when you can't help but stand up to your authority figures and it felt good. I also enjoyed Epstein as it reminded me a bit of Death of a Salesman (a favorite),...more
I can't believe it took me 52 years to discover Philip Roth. Sure, I'd heard of his work before, but had never read any of his books/short stories or seen the film adaptations. I was blown away by his writing - beautiful prose, keen psychological insight, and a window into a bygone era of Jewish and American culture/history. I listened to these stories on CD and the narrations by John Rubinstein, Harlan Ellison, Elliot Gould, Jerry Zaks, and Theodore Bikel really enhanced the experience. I've he...more
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Philip Milton Roth is an American novelist. He gained early literary fame with the 1959 collection Goodbye, Columbus (winner of 1960's National Book Award), cemented it with his 1969 bestseller Portnoy's Complaint, and has continued to write critically-acclaimed works, many of which feature his fictional alter ego, Nathan Zuckerman. The Zuckerman novels began with The Ghost Writer in 1979, and inc...more
More about Philip Roth...
American Pastoral (The American Trilogy #1) Portnoy's Complaint The Plot Against America The Human Stain (The American Trilogy, #3) Everyman

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“Actually we did not have the feelings we said we had until we spoke them--at least I didn't; to phrase them was to invent them and own them.” 49 likes
“I did not want to voice a word that would lift the cover and reveal that hideous emotion I always felt for her, the underside of love.” 2 likes
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