This picaresque, which is to say hypermanic novel is all chaos, carried off with a definite bravura even though it is...

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This picaresque, which is to say hypermanic novel is all chaos, carried off with a definite bravura even though it is certainly carried on too long. Alex Under-land's earliest and naturally most enduring memory is when, at five, his mother tries to push him out of the window of the Ritz. They had been abandoned by his father and in spite of these initial traumata, Alex grows up to be a Wunderkind. While ostensibly studying medicine in college, he writes a play which is optioned for Broadway and shown all over the world. Alex marries Bea, a nasty little girl who is equally unpleasant when he meets her later, walks out on her, on college, and begins six years of wandering, dishwashing, servicing a one-eyed, one legged Countess, imposing an abortion on a girl who dies as a result of it, and eventually bumming his way back home. Once there, he makes a supernova success with three one-act plays, all Absurd, picks up again with the members of his past, and is last seen joylessly considering a ""limp little romp"" with Bea.... Alex is a little like Purdy's Malcolm, a sick Peter Pan to whom all this happens. Some of it is funny (Esquire is picking up a section of it) but all of it is too much.

Pub Date: May 9, 1966

ISBN: N/A

Page Count: -

Publisher: Putnam

Review Posted Online: N/A

Kirkus Reviews Issue: May 1, 1966