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John Updike: The Collected Stories
From his first collection, The Same Door, released in 1959, to his last, My Father’s Tears, published fifty years later, John Updike was America’s reigning master of the short story, "our second Hawthorne,” as Philip Roth described him. His evocations of small-town Pennsylvania life, and of his own religious, artistic, and sexual awakening, transfixed readers of The New Yo ...more
Hardcover, 1872 pages
Published September 12th 2013 by Library of America
(first published January 1st 1971)
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Wow, well over six months reading Updike short stories. In truth I read these stories in spurts, with the last three hundred pages being finished in the last week. I wanted to savor what is likely the last Updike I shall read. This man was incredibly gifted, prolific in the extreme with novels, essays, reviews, poetry and more but it seems that the short story might be his best writing. Having read two massive collections of his I find it hard to think anyone has ever done it better. Of course a ...more
The purpose of art, according to Updike, was 'to give the mundane it's beautiful due'. That is what is entire oeuvre is about. Some people find this ability to pinpoint the most mundane of things brilliant, for others a larger landscape is more worthy of engaging. Updike is for the former. Like Alice Munro, or Flannery O' Connor. There's no grand scheme of things here, no great plot unravelling. Just the utter pointlessness and waste of everyday life. That is his art.
John Hoyer Updike was an American writer. Updike's most famous work is his Rabbit series (Rabbit, Run; Rabbit Redux; Rabbit Is Rich; Rabbit At Rest; and Rabbit Remembered). Rabbit is Rich and Rabbit at Rest both won Pulitzer Prizes for Updike. Describing his subject as "the American small town, Protestant middle class," Updike is well known for his careful craftsmanship and prolific writing, havin ...more