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Novels 1920-1925

4.03  ·  Rating Details  ·  34 Ratings  ·  6 Reviews
Before he began the U.S.A. trilogy, John Dos Passos prefigured his groundbreaking epic through three novels that provide a fascinating glimpse into his stunning achievement as an avant-garde prose stylist while they incisively chronicle early twentieth century Europe and America. "Manhattan Transfer" (1925), a kaleidoscopic portrait of New York City, is universally acknowl ...more
Hardcover, 879 pages
Published September 23rd 2003 by Library of America (first published September 15th 2003)
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Christopher Sutch
Jul 16, 2016 Christopher Sutch rated it really liked it
Please see my reviews of the individual works in this volume.

A note on the volume as a whole: I own the first printing of this book; perhaps some of the textual and editorial issues I encountered with this volume in the LOA have been fixed in later printings. Townsend Ludington wrote the notes for the volume, but he did a pretty piss-poor job of it. He is evidently a Dos Passos scholar. However, the notes on the texts are often less than informative, particularly the note on _Manhattan Transfer_
Scott Fuchs
Jan 12, 2015 Scott Fuchs rated it really liked it
Shelves: ny-fiction, fiction
While I am not a fan of e-readers, I began to long for one to serve as a constant point of reference to the characters; Kindle's 'X-Ray' feature, to wit.
I'm a lover of epic literature and sagas, with a great leaning toward the late 19th century Russians. Another of my favorite reads are imigrant sagas,from classic to even some pop. Living with multifarious characters through 400 or more pages is a special delight.
Oct 11, 2011 Lenny added it
I started out by reading Manhattan Transfer. The reviews that I read concerning this book, made it seem fantastic.It was interesting in some parts. Throughout most of the story,it was near impossible to keep track of who's who.While reading it, I began thinking that I should keep a scorecard of the different characters, since Dos Passos skips around so much.In One man's Initiation and Three Soldiers,the story was a little easier to track, since there were fewer characters.After awhile reading Th ...more
Mar 06, 2014 David rated it liked it
The books of Dos Passos may have been stylistically groundbreaking in America when first published. However, his earlier books seem antiquated nowadays.
George Krzewski
Nov 12, 2013 George Krzewski rated it it was amazing
"Juss set here a minute an look at her Gabriel....Look at the old bitch if you'll pardon the expression. Earthquake insurance, gosh they need it don't they? Do you know how long God took to destroy the tower of Babel, folks? Seven minutes. Do you know how long the Lord God took to destroy Babylon and Nineveh? Seven minutes. There's more wickedness in one block in New York City than there was in square mile in Nineveh, and how long do you think the Lord God of Sabboath will take to destroy New Yo ...more
Dec 19, 2009 Beau rated it really liked it
now reading "Manhattan Transfer"
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John Roderigo Dos Passos was an American novelist and artist.

He received a first-class education at The Choate School, in Connecticut, in 1907, under the name John Roderigo Madison. Later, he traveled with his tutor on a tour through France, England, Italy, Greece and the Middle East to study classical art, architecture and literature.

In 1912 he attended Harvard University and, after graduating in
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“A novel is a commodity that fulfills a certain need; people need to buy daydreams like they need to buy ice cream or aspirin or gin. They even need to buy a pinch of intellectual catnip now and then to liven up their thoughts...” 12 likes
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