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The author responsible for delivering One Hundred Dollar Misunderstanding to an admiring literary world (south of hep) has not created any character in this, is second novel, capable of capturing public and private imaginations in the way that Kitten and J.C. did. However, neither has he failed the critics and reviewers who recognized his genuine talent and power. Eue Dean is a newspaper reporter, cynical about people and their motives and optimistic about his chances of seducing his next door neighbor Helwig. Hauled out of bed at 4:00 A.M. to get the story on atcheted widow who may have been the victim of a sex maniac, Dean experiences a of self recognition on viewing her exposed corpse. The memory of his own aggravated desire for the brainlessly teasing Helwig reveals the ""why?"" rather than he ""who?"" of the crime. A memorable recreation of Dean's next repulsed siege of ?education leaves him desperate with excitation, further overheated by liquor and suffocating sense of self-contempt for his role in the stimulation of morbid excitement over the murder. Dean returns to his apartment house where he watches and moves toward Helwig's window. Arrested, he falsely confesses to the first murder. The police fail to appreciate his sense of shared guilt or the schizoid clarity of his vision. The atmosphere through which he must move is made real through the use of inane road signs, commercials, news releases, rock and roll lyrics, etc. Even the print has been interestingly arranged in geometric paradigms which suggest the focus of Dean's desire... Who did it? Who knows? Only society is held responsible here.

Pub Date: Sept. 23rd, 1963
Publisher: Grove Press