SURVIVING

THE UNCOLLECTED WRITINGS OF HENRY GREEN

Who knows that it won't be Henry Green (1905-73), not Joyce or Woolf, that history finally will favor as the greatest English prose-extender of the century? For mysteriousness, fidelity both to complex sensation and simple speech, humane comedy, and what John Updike in the introduction here perfectly encapsulates as ``marvellous originality, intuition, sensuality, and finish,'' Green's novels are almost without equal. And yet by 1952, with Doting, he was done—to live out another 20 years as a businessman, then retiree: an eerie coda, largely of silence. But from the whole career, his grandson now has collected what scraps, rejected work, and bit-journalism he did (along with the amazing Paris Review interview he gave in 1958 to Terry Southern). There are some minor fiction drafts here (a trying-out of the articleless prose of Living; a 1927 sketch describing a swarm of starlings that seems a premonition of the great birds-in-a-tree passage in the much later Concluding). But most interesting may be Green's ever modest insistences, in the occasional article or book review, on fiction as a ``non-representational art,'' ``life which is not''—an art of misapprehension, mistake, mishearing: an antidote to the imperialism of authorial direction more convincing than the French deconstructionism of later decades. And, in a 1961 chiding of fiction critics, there's this jewel: ``Living one's own life can be a great muddle, but the great writers do not make it plain, they palliate, and put the whole in a sort of proportion. Which helps; and on the whole, year after year, help is what one needs.'' No Green fan will want to be without it. (First serial rights to Antaeus, Conjunctions, Grand Street, Missouri Review, Paris Review, and Story)

Pub Date: Feb. 1, 1993

ISBN: 0-670-80476-2

Page Count: 320

Publisher: Viking

Review Posted Online: May 20, 2010

Kirkus Reviews Issue: Dec. 1, 1992

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Stricter than, say, Bergen Evans or W3 ("disinterested" means impartial — period), Strunk is in the last analysis...

THE ELEMENTS OF STYLE

50TH ANNIVERSARY EDITION

Privately published by Strunk of Cornell in 1918 and revised by his student E. B. White in 1959, that "little book" is back again with more White updatings.

Stricter than, say, Bergen Evans or W3 ("disinterested" means impartial — period), Strunk is in the last analysis (whoops — "A bankrupt expression") a unique guide (which means "without like or equal").

Pub Date: May 15, 1972

ISBN: 0205632645

Page Count: 105

Publisher: Macmillan

Review Posted Online: Oct. 28, 2011

Kirkus Reviews Issue: May 1, 1972

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WHAT A WONDERFUL WORLD

A LIFETIME OF RECORDINGS

Noted jazz and pop record producer Thiele offers a chatty autobiography. Aided by record-business colleague Golden, Thiele traces his career from his start as a ``pubescent, novice jazz record producer'' in the 1940s through the '50s, when he headed Coral, Dot, and Roulette Records, and the '60s, when he worked for ABC and ran the famous Impulse! jazz label. At Coral, Thiele championed the work of ``hillbilly'' singer Buddy Holly, although the only sessions he produced with Holly were marred by saccharine strings. The producer specialized in more mainstream popsters like the irrepressibly perky Teresa Brewer (who later became his fourth wife) and the bubble-machine muzak-meister Lawrence Welk. At Dot, Thiele was instrumental in recording Jack Kerouac's famous beat- generation ramblings to jazz accompaniment (recordings that Dot's president found ``pornographic''), while also overseeing a steady stream of pop hits. He then moved to the Mafia-controlled Roulette label, where he observed the ``silk-suited, pinky-ringed'' entourage who frequented the label's offices. Incredibly, however, Thiele remembers the famously hard-nosed Morris Levy, who ran the label and was eventually convicted of extortion, as ``one of the kindest, most warm-hearted, and classiest music men I have ever known.'' At ABC/Impulse!, Thiele oversaw the classic recordings of John Coltrane, although he is the first to admit that Coltrane essentially produced his own sessions. Like many producers of the day, Thiele participated in the ownership of publishing rights to some of the songs he recorded; he makes no apology for this practice, which he calls ``entirely appropriate and without any ethical conflicts.'' A pleasant, if not exactly riveting, memoir that will be of most interest to those with a thirst for cocktail-hour stories of the record biz. (25 halftones, not seen)

Pub Date: May 1, 1995

ISBN: 0-19-508629-4

Page Count: 224

Publisher: Oxford Univ.

Review Posted Online: May 20, 2010

Kirkus Reviews Issue: March 1, 1995

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