THE LAST PICTURE SHOW  by Larry McMurtry

THE LAST PICTURE SHOW

A Novel

KIRKUS REVIEW

Thalia, Texas is the sort of God foresaken small town where, "...you can't sneeze without somebody offerin' you a handkerchief." As one of the inhabitants remarks, "Kids nowadays fornicate like frogs," and in patches the reading becomes that slippery. The kids are Sonny and his sidekick, Duane, and they have their senior year in high school to get through. It's made uneasy for them by Jacy, Duane's girl and the image for Sonny's masturbation. She specializes in paroxysmal public kisses with Duane and all her sexual efforts, from a dull nude swimming orgy in Witchita to her eventual elopement with Sonny, are made with audience satisfaction in mind. Their marriage was annulled, but Sonny slept with her mother that night. (He wasn't quite up to Mother's expertise although he'd put in daily practice with the coach's wife.) Sonny is the sympathetic character shown on the verge of manhood, or humanity, depending on your point of view. Hear him thinking after bowing out of the gang rape of a blind heifer: "Before, it had always seemed like fun, whether it was getting drunk or screwing heifers..." Sex is the groin level blind eye that directs all the characters and the basis for any philosophic comment and the end result, normal or subhuman, of all their encounters. It's a commercial book guaranteed to the talented author's audience won with Horsemen Pass By (filmed as Hud) but chockablock with all the devices for teaching fictional heroes the facts of life one meets in print, with monotonous regularity.
Pub Date: Nov. 1st, 1966
ISBN: 0684853868
Page count: 292pp
Publisher: Dial
Review Posted Online:
Kirkus Reviews Issue: Nov. 1st, 1966




MORE BY LARRY MCMURTRY

FictionTHE LAST KIND WORDS SALOON by Larry McMurtry
by Larry McMurtry
NonfictionCUSTER by Larry McMurtry
by Larry McMurtry
NonfictionLITERARY LIFE by Larry McMurtry
by Larry McMurtry

SIMILAR BOOKS SUGGESTED BY OUR CRITICS:

FictionALL THE LAND TO HOLD US by Rick Bass
by Rick Bass
FictionTHE QUIET STREETS OF WINSLOW by Judy Troy
by Judy Troy
FictionTHE RIVER SWIMMER by Jim Harrison
by Jim Harrison