Goodreads helps you keep track of books you want to read.
Start by marking “Rabbit Is Rich (Rabbit Angstrom, #3)” as Want to Read:
Rabbit Is Rich (Rabbit Angstrom, #3)
Enlarge cover
Rate this book
Clear rating
Open Preview

Rabbit Is Rich (Rabbit Angstrom #3)

3.9  ·  Rating details ·  13,638 Ratings  ·  512 Reviews
Winner of the 1982 Pulitzer Prize for Fiction.
Ten years after RABBIT REDUX, Harry Angstrom has come to enjoy prosperity as the Chief Sales Representative of Springer Motors. The rest of the world may be falling to pieces, but Harry's doing all right. That is, until his son returns from the West, and the image of an old love pays a visit to his lot....
Paperback, 480 pages
Published October 30th 1997 by Penguin Books Ltd (first published January 1st 1981)
More Details... edit details

Friend Reviews

To see what your friends thought of this book, please sign up.

Community Reviews

(showing 1-30)
Rating details
Sort: Default
When Harry “Rabbit” Angstrom begins to weep at his son Nelson's wedding, the ladies stare at him with surprise and become wistful, witnessing these unlikely, raw emotions. Aw, heck, ladies would you just look at Rabbit, mid-life, becoming a big softie? One woman quickly hands him her grubby handkerchief. The poor dear!

Oh, if only they knew. . . that, as the 46-year-old Rabbit stares at the page of his prayer book, which he thinks looks as “white and blank as the nape of Nelson's poor mute frail
Ah, you bad, bad boy, Mr. John Updike.

It's 1979, Jimmy Carter is president, and it's a good time for selling Toyotas. Rabbit is head salesman at his late father-in-law's car dealership. He's still married to Janice. He's buddies with Charlie, his wife's former lover. And, he's rich. He belongs to a club, he drives a nice car, he's buying a house, he's taking vacations, he's ... well, he's having a swinging old time.

Sounds good, right? Well, the fly in the ointment is always there for Rabbit, whe
Aug 04, 2017 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
4.75 stars

the rabbit series has become, for me, an easily admitable vice, one that doesn't consume yr quantity or quality of sleep should yr friends or family catch wind of it as result of yr carelessness. it has become a time to purge, eight dollar ticket in hand for the second matinee at the predecessor to sabbath's theater, twelve hours of horror conveniently condensed to a respectable ninety minutes.

a handful of pages into rabbit, run, one could see harry "rabbit" angstrom, former high schoo
MJ Nicholls
Glib Capsule Review:

Rabbit cracks wise. Rabbit talks about cars. Rabbit scrutinises female anatomy. Rabbit bawls out no-good lowlife son. Rabbit’s actions receive entirely undeserved Harvard-strength descriptive torrent. Rabbit screws his wife. Rabbit fantasises about screwing his friend’s young wife. Rabbit makes racist or sexist remark. Rabbit thinks about daughter or dead Skeeter. Rabbit goes into four/five-page thought-stream with no paragraph breaks. Rabbit wants very much to have sexual in
Michael Finocchiaro
Watching Rabbit Angstrom at almost my age was fascinating. The text is deliciously Proustian and I love the perspective on the 70s. The world microcosm Brewster is alive fascinating as a study of America in the waning years of the 20th century's hangover after the 60s. His descriptions of human relationships are among the most realistic I have ever read. A must.

A much better book IHMO than Redux, Rabbit is never really rich, but the text is incredibly rich in the relationships - particularly bet
Aug 08, 2011 rated it liked it
This third decade of Rabbit’s shenanigans is... incredibly dull. Didn’t the 70’s include all that Disco and outrageous fashion and pre-80s outrageous & vapid opulence? It does exist in Rabbit’s (albeit OUR) America, but Rabbit has become such an old man (at the age of 46!) that he cannot enjoy his monetary glory at all. He worries still, not for the well being of his family, no, but mostly over his own selfish hide, his manly desires fulfilled (though mostly not). I hated the dialogue betwee ...more
Aug 15, 2016 rated it it was amazing
Shelves: 2016
Rabbit is the great American schlub. He's perfectly mediocre. He's one of those guys whose best days were as a high school athlete and now he's growing a beer gut. He's got an okay job, he's a pretty shitty father, he's a pig, he loves Consumer Reports, he's racist but not so racist that he thinks of himself as racist. He's an everyday asshole.

Updike has managed to neither love nor hate him, just describe him. But he gets you deep enough into him that you find yourself feeling bad for him when
Jan 02, 2015 rated it it was ok
Shelves: pulitzer-fiction
Rabbit is Rich won a pocketful of awards, most notably the Pulitzer Prize for fiction. That doesn't mean I have to like it, and I certainly didn't. It's not that Updike's writing isn't great -- no writer can do a better job of placing you uncomfortably inside a character's brain as Updike can, and no book made me want to find a plain brown wrapper to cover it like this book did. It's not that I'm unfamiliar with Harry/Rabbit Angstrom's life journey to this point, having read the first two Rabbit ...more
Luís C.
Lisbon Book-Fair 2017.
Chad Malkamaki
May 24, 2017 rated it it was amazing
It's interesting that I chose to read Rabbit is Rich at the same time I decided to read Independence Day. Each book deals with a protagonist that is trying to find his way in America in his forties. The former is set in 1979, dealing with the gas crisis, the last years of the Carter presidency, and a struggle to connect with his college age son who is just as lost as he was when he was that age. The later is set in Summer of 1988 gearing up for the Dukakis vs. Bush showdown that November.

As far
Dec 07, 2012 rated it it was amazing
Shelves: lit, favourites
His own life closed in to a size his soul had not yet shrunk to fit.

Rabbit is dragged kicking and screaming into middle-age. Regular people are not known to react well to this, and Rabbit is worse than regular people. This makes for an often hilarious read.

Strangely enough, he toes the line for the most part but it's not because of maturity. His wife has inherited all the money he enjoys (and boy, is he smug about all the money he didn't earn) and if he leaves her, he loses the money. He like
Jun 16, 2015 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
La vita si dissolve dietro di noi mentre siamo ancora vivi

Leggere un romanzo nel momento adeguato è determinante per apprezzarlo. A trent'anni è troppo tardi per leggere kerouac e troppo presto per leggere Updike, questo pensavo prima di trovare nella postfazione:
Updike aveva spiegato che Corri, Coniglio era in parte una risposta a Sulla strada di Kerouac e inteso come una «dimostrazione realistica di cosa accade a un giovane padre di famiglia americano quando prende la strada»
Ho letto senza sap
Jul 25, 2011 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
I read this book as the third in the Rabbit series (Rabbit, Run, Rabbit Redux, and then Rabbit is Rich). My book group chose Rabbit, Run out of curiosity about books by the recently-deceased John Updike. I was inspired enough to continue with the series. By far, I enjoyed this book the most of the three. Rabbit has finally become a sympathetic character, taking control of his life and making decisions. The previous two books showed Rabbit as a self-consumed ass, indirectly contributing to the de ...more
Aug 03, 2015 rated it really liked it
Shelves: reviewed
Rabbit remembers climbing trees as a child, "...gripping tighter and tighter as the branches got smaller." As an adult, he realizes, "From a certain angle the most terrifying thing in the world is your own life, the fact that it's yours and nobody else's." In the title of the first book in this four-volume series, John Updike advises Rabbit to Run. But Rabbit doesn't, he can't, he is frozen in place, and now the proverbial branches are getting even smaller, time is running out. One hopes for red ...more
Oto Bakradze
Mar 31, 2017 rated it really liked it
ფანტასტიური წერის სტილი სავსე მამა-შვილური ურთიერთობებით და სექს ისტორიებით))

ოთხტომეულის საუკეთესო წიგნია ჩემი აზრით.
Nov 29, 2008 rated it really liked it
He's rich, and in the third volume he miraculously manages not kill anyone while looking for some quick sex. Who says you can't learn from experience?
Jan 10, 2016 rated it it was amazing
Shelves: fiction, america
This is the third installment in Updike's celebrated tetralogy about the life of Harold "Rabbit" Angstrom, a regular American guy living a regular American life. Told in that uniquely graceful prose that was the key to Updike's brilliance, this series stands out as a set of memorable portraits of a place (Pennsylvania), and an average man who lives there and deals with the changes in his world and in himself. The first Rabbit book showed us a young man bucking against the conformist world of the ...more
May 03, 2014 rated it it was ok
"Harry Angstrom -- A Memoir of Boners"

It's the late 1970s and Harry "Rabbit" Angstrom is older, fatter, and still just as obsessed with his prick and where it might go as ever.

Example: "He never world have given Charlie a handshake like this two weeks ago, but since fucking Thelma up the ass..."

That's an actual sentence in the book (about 4/5 of the way in).

He's now firmly ensconced in his role as Sales Manager for his dead father-in-law's Toyota dealership, he plays a lot of golf at the local
Oct 01, 2013 rated it really liked it
I'm slowly working my way through the Rabbit books and, where Redux felt like a bit of a mis-step, Rabbit is Rich works rather better. Maybe it's simply the benefit of having had Harry Angstrom in my head for two books already by now, but here he comes across as a more convincing, fully developed character than he did in, particularly, the second book. And while I wasn't around at the time, I thought Updike's evocation of the mood of the time more convincing than in the previous novel.

The relat
Dec 15, 2016 rated it really liked it
I enjoyed this one better than the previous book,Rabbit Redux. It was interesting to read this one as Rabbit is roughly the same age as I am now so I felt I could relate to some of his thoughts. A lot of thinking back upon life, feeling comfortable in the moment, yet wondering what the future holds as you see people around you pass on into the next life.

Also, a lot of chuckling every time Consumer Reports was mentioned. It appeared to be Rabbit's bible!
Kelly ...
Dec 04, 2017 rated it really liked it
It is 1979. Gas lines wrap around the block and there are hostages in Iran. I was in high school in 1979 and the setting is interesting to me because it is so real. It made me remember much that I had forgotten.

Rabbit is older though not more mature. He is still a poor husband, father, friend, and boss. Worse, he is still a poor human. And yet the book is a good read. Updike works magic, making me care about the story even though I dislike the characters.
Apr 03, 2015 rated it really liked it
Shelves: general-reading
Rabbit is much more likable in this book, though he continues to desire things he can never have and follow his own thoughts in ways that he shouldn't. He objectifies women as sexual objects so completely and consistently that every encounter he has with a woman no matter how unattractive or taboo, he can't help himself. He's a lecherous old man at 46. The problem is that it rings true, from my twisted baby boomer male perspective. I think many men are the same, and it must be disorienting to a ...more
Jun 29, 2007 rated it really liked it
Recommends it for: people who like good, round characters
Shelves: mybasicbookshelf
i love updike---i started reading the rabbit books and then got so fully into rabbit that i went through the series pretty quickly.

i liked updike's first in the series, "rabbit run," but it took me a while to really love him as much as i did by the time i got to "rabbit is rich". i love the roundness of his stories and his patience in letting his characters develop slowly. updike pays attention to the details of everyday life without making them of monumental importance. but after a while you s
Apr 03, 2013 rated it liked it
Both Rabbit, Run and Rabbit Redux are powerful and engaging novels that cut against the grain of their decades: in the former we see Updike, an anti-Kerouac, introducing Harry Angstrom, an anti-Sal Paradise who doesn't go on the road, who refuses the new freedoms and stays put; in the latter Updike graduates to an anti-Kesey, chronicling Angstrom's nervous flirtation with -and final rejection of - the new liberties that the sixties have opened up. Rabbit is Rich takes us forward another decade t ...more
Mar 02, 2013 rated it it was amazing
I loved-loved-loved this book. In my mind it's a masterpiece, and the only question is whether it's excellence rises enough to compare to Gatsby and The Sun Also Rises. I'll say it's not quite there, but it's close. Harry Angstrom has always been a great character, but in this book Nelson and Janice finally find their voice. What elevates this book is the battle between Rabbit and Nelson, backed up by his mom and grandmother. The kid is coddled and spoiled, and annoying as hell, but Updike gives ...more
Mar 09, 2009 rated it really liked it
I had no idea what to expect from John Updike. I picked up this book on a whim at the library after hearing about his death, hoping that there was a shred of something in this story that I could relate to. Turns out there wasn't, but John Updike is a gifted writer, in my opinion, and manages to infuse an unremarkable industrial town in Pennsylvania with the light of a thousand ships, illuminating every detail in eye-popping color. I guess the 70's were supposed to be the decade of sexual experim ...more
Gas lines, Krugerrands, the silver splurge, Iranian hostages, the price of oil. Updike settles Rabbit at the age of 46 in the middle of the Carter administration. Thanks to the convenience of his father in law's death, Rabbit finds himself the chief sales rep for Springer Motors. In the midst of the nation's first oil crisis, it's only natural that Springer Motors has obtained a Toyota distributorship. And "Rabbit is Rich." Son Nelson is now 23, a disaffected college drop out, with one too many ...more
Dec 31, 2013 rated it really liked it
The children's book of this would be called "EVERYBODY FUCKS". Harry really gets his kink on in his late 40's, but I feel my mentality age with Harry through the series. It use to be like "I saw a vagina today, here are the lovely metaphoric details!" and now I'm like "Yea. Cunts." I imagine Rabbit at Rest is going to be Harry sitting in the barcalounge going "hey, I've seen some pussy in my day!"

But all the sex aside I'm really starting to hate kids of all ages through all times. What a bunch o
Mar 30, 2015 rated it liked it
Shelves: pulitzer
I expected to like this one better than Rabbit, Redux, and I did not. Mostly seems like getting old is a drag, and I didn't bet on being old already at 46. But Rabbit seems pretty dang old. This book is a whole lot of erectile dysfunction, giving up on might-have-been's, and settling for whatever life has given you. It is at times blisteringly funny and heart-rendingly realistic, but it was more of a drag than a delight. I head into Rabbit #4 with less anticipation than #3.
Jun 16, 2011 rated it it was ok  ·  review of another edition
Well, now I can say I've read Updike.
« previous 1 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 next »
There are no discussion topics on this book yet. Be the first to start one »
  • The Store
  • Guard of Honor
  • Years of Grace
  • In This Our Life
  • Journey in the Dark
  • Scarlet Sister Mary
  • Early Autumn: A Story of a Lady
  • Honey in the Horn
  • Elbow Room
  • The Collected Stories of Jean Stafford
  • The Town
  • Dragon's Teeth I (World's End)
  • The Able McLaughlins
  • The Edge of Sadness
  • The Travels of Jaimie McPheeters
  • Lamb in His Bosom
  • The Late George Apley
  • Now in November
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
More about John Updike...

Other Books in the Series

Rabbit Angstrom (4 books)
  • Rabbit, Run (Rabbit Angstrom #1)
  • Rabbit Redux (Rabbit Angstrom #2)
  • Rabbit at Rest (Rabbit Angstrom #4)
“How can you respect the world when you see it's being run by a bunch of kids turned old?” 95 likes
“The world keeps ending but new people too dumb to know it keep showing up as if the fun's just started.” 76 likes
More quotes…