FICTION OF THE FIFTIES by Herbert-Ed. Gold

FICTION OF THE FIFTIES

By
Email this review

KIRKUS REVIEW

A young American novelist and short story writer (author of the recently published The Optimist) has selected these 15 works as examples of the most significant developments made by American writers in the past decade in both the novel and the short story. (In his introduction, Mr. Gold points out the characteristics of each form in order to reveal how very different are the purpose, problems, and attitude of the contemporary short story writer from those of the contemporary novelist.) Outstanding in this collection are James Baldwin's story of a young Negro jazz musician; a beautifully refreshing piece of prose -- A Sermon by Doctor Pep -- by Saul Bellow, who, according to the editor ""expresses most clearly the philosophical and religious quest necessarily contained within all abiding sense for passing things""; Herbert Gold's own story Love and Like, depicting the intense and honest emotional struggles of a young divorce; and a startlingly perceptive and thoughtful vignette of Georgian white trash by Flannery O'Connor. A few of Mr. Gold's selections are disappointing (perhaps stories about suburbia have become too commonplace in recent fiction to be appealing or vital any more), but they are all consistent in their attempt to give coherent expression to a wide range of contemporary American experience and to avoid the label of ""beat"" or ""angry"".

Pub Date: Nov. 19th, 1959
Publisher: Doubleday