MANY WINDOWS: 23 Stories from American Review by Ted--Ed. Solotaroff
Kirkus Star

MANY WINDOWS: 23 Stories from American Review

Email this review


The literary magazine American Review (a.k.a. New American Review), which lasted for 26 issues, was unremarkable in its poetry and its essays. But Solotaroff was (and is) a gifted fiction editor, and fiction was the magazine's beacon--with an eclectic excellence that is fully reflected in this fine anthology. Harold Brodkey's ""Innocence"" is a dazzling stand-out: the most specific imaginable granulation and re-synthesis of sex-as-transfiguration. So, too, is Gilbert Sorrentino's sentimental yet astonishingly immediate story of past love as myth, ""The Moon In Its Flight."" And other pieces have proven to be of lasting importance: William Gass' remarkable sentence-building (""In The Heart of the Heart of the Country""); Philip Roth's balletic leap, with Kafka as a refugee Newark Hebrew teacher (""I Always Wanted You To Admire My Fasting""); Max Apple's pop-art-with-warmth, ""The Oranging of America""; Grace Paley's exhilaratingly messy stylistics in ""Faith In A Tree."" (More surprising winners: George Dennison's luminous ""A Talc of Pierrot"" and Anne Higgins' irresistibly ironic ""In Search of a Missing IUD."") There are poor relations here, too, of course: so-so work by Robert Stone, John Hawkes, M. E Beal, Ian McEwan, Vasily Askenov, J. E Powers. Yet, overall, the quality is high indeed, the general tone tending toward virtuoso, self-contained performances. And Solotaroff's bracing catholicity of taste is perhaps the most impressive contribution of all to this rich, challenging collection.

Pub Date: Dec. 15th, 1982
Publisher: Harper & Row