Prufrock's Page

Sunday, March 26, 2006

Malamud Redux

Though Janna Malamud Smith's book on her father has received decidedly mixed reviews, at least it's refocused attention on a writer who doesn't deserve to be neglected. Here, for example, is Jonathan Yardley in The Washington Post:

"Not all of Malamud's work achieves the heights of The Assistant and The Magic Barrel , but it ranks with the best of his time, and far above what passes for the best of our own. Its most persistent themes -- the search for a new life and the struggle to achieve moral rectitude -- have lasting pertinence and have rarely been explored so subtly and perceptively in literature. His prose, at times melancholy and at others jaunty, achieves a near-perfect fusion of American and Jewish-American rhythms. He was as much fabulist as novelist, with the happy result that almost all of his fiction transcends time."


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