unfortunately, the epistolary nature of S. causes a massive unraveling, mostly b/c the man behind the curtain is just a bit too visible. updike tries to feed the reader exposition and subtext that the writer of the letters herself ain't hip to. he further shoots himself in the foot b/...more
This book is supposedly a satire, and I will agree that it is entertaining on that level. But I...more
This is the second Updike book which I feel having reached the end that, I could read it again, because there's a lot of detail that I've missed, that I could actually learn something from. Toward the End of Time is the other one which I love completely and devotionally and will one day re-read.
Both books incidentally are written from an intensely personal point of view, this one being a series of letters, and tapes written by Sarah (S). "Toward the End of Time" is supposedly a diar...more
When he died, I panicked! Anyway, "S." was the book on the shelf at the library. I could have waited and ordered "Rabbit, Run", but, I was frantic. I grabbed it, and started reading.
I normally read with a dictionary, or my computer set to Dictionary.com. I re...more
S. is Sarah Worth – doctor's wife, North Shore matron, loving mother, and now (suddenly!) ardent follower of a Hindu religious leader known as the Arhat. As this brilliant and very funny novel opens, Sarah is fleeing the confinement of her suburban life to become a sannyasin (pilgrim) at her guru's Arizona ashram. In the letters and audiocassettes that Sarah sends to her husband, daughter, mother, brother, best friend – to her psychiatrist and her hairdresser and her dentist – master novelist Jo...more
Even though I'm writing a novel myself about a man's relationship to his Indian guru (almost finished), I'd never heard of this book. But I can recommend it wholeheartedly. The prose is exceptional, the satire is spot on but a little predictable - my only criticism of this masterly written novel. However, Updike pulls it all together in the end for a very...more
S is about a woman who joins a Hindu cult fashioned in the book to resemble OSHO, after separating from her husband, tiring of his perfidy.
The heretic spiritual leader called Arhat, seems dubious right from the start. However, Sarah is smitten, at least at first.
Through letters and foxly crafted tapes only, sent to her various frien...more
The story is told in letters and tape recordings of a middle-aged New England woman who has left her husband and life to join an ashram in the Arizona desert. It is set in the 1980's. It is a humourous take, which reflects on common Updike themes of religion and sex (and their nexus). As is the case with Updike, occasionally a line really stands out as...more
I found this novel interesting from a number of different standpoints. All the writing is done in the form of letters and dictated tapes -- there is no narration. I find this an extremely interesting way of telling a story and Updike makes it work very well. I'm also a sucker for...more