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9 of 9 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars A heart-rending tale of love and insecurity
This novelette marks a change of style for Roth. It is a short and very personal account of the insecurities of true love. In this case the central character is a familiar Rothian sexual adventurer who loses all his self-confidence when he finally falls in love with one of his much younger former students. His inability to confront his insecurity leads him to destroy...
Published on 28 Dec 2001

versus
1.0 out of 5 stars sexist and offensive
Really unpleasant and sexist. Why does amazon require sixteen more words to review this? This novel is pornographic in a most unpleasant way.
Published 7 months ago by Old Hippy


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9 of 9 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars A heart-rending tale of love and insecurity, 28 Dec 2001
By A Customer
This review is from: The Dying Animal (Hardcover)
This novelette marks a change of style for Roth. It is a short and very personal account of the insecurities of true love. In this case the central character is a familiar Rothian sexual adventurer who loses all his self-confidence when he finally falls in love with one of his much younger former students. His inability to confront his insecurity leads him to destroy the relationship. He only discovers his mistake when it is too late. I loved this book. As so often with Roth, one wonders how much is autobiographical.... to call the transient sex scenes pornographic is prurient and silly: this is a story about human tragedy, beautifully crafted by one of the greatest writers.
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8 of 9 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars A beautiful but ultimately tragic story., 29 Aug 2001
By A Customer
This review is from: The Dying Animal (Hardcover)
I read this book on a sunny Saturday afternoon in the park. The book is small in size, both pages and format, so it makes you feel that he's written it just for you. Like he's letting you into a secret. It's a beautiful story, sometimes meandering, but it always comes back to the main story with a jolt. The ending makes you realise we are all human, no matter what lives we are leading. Life can be taken from you, in a second, in the most tragic way.
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2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars An eternally relevant book., 28 Oct 2013
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This review is from: The Dying Animal (Paperback)
Should be compulsory reading for all young girls and all middle aged men. …… and middle aged women! to remind themselves that despite the universal delusion of being a civilized and evolved species we are,quite simply animals,and the pain and suffering to the human soul when we forget this or consider that we are superior to the more basic instincts is beautifully portrayed, stripped back …… acutely relevant to our narcissistic society. It has been made into a classic movie …Elegy, starring a remarkable Ben Kingsley and a surprisingly good Penelope Cruz. Both the book and the movie are so good that I can honestly say that uniquely it doesn't matter if you watch the movie before reading the book or vice versa. Buy it, read it and re-read it.
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4 of 5 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars The male brain laid bare, 8 Feb 2009
By 
M. Harrison "Hamish" (London, UK) - See all my reviews
(TOP 500 REVIEWER)    (REAL NAME)   
This review is from: The Dying Animal (Paperback)
If you haven't yet read Philip Roth - or if you haven't read him apart from an improperly motivated skip through Portnoy's Complaint in your teenage years - then this is a fine introduction.

The Dying Animal is short - a novella really. That isn't typical of Roth. But the writing is. The book characteristically takes an aspect of the human psyche we all know exists but would rather not dwell on - and dwells on it. And equally characteristically Roth does so with an acerbic, articulate precision that makes the reader almost wince that the English language could be deployed with such brutality, yet so beautifully.

The Dying Animal in question is an ageing charismatic university professor, David Kepesh, who has spent a lifetime sexually grazing upon his students. The book is narrated through his eyes, and with no apology. 'No matter how much you know, no matter how much you think, no matter how much you plot and you connive and you plan, you're not superior to sex'. For decades it is a motto that serves as his justification. But now, in his latest affair, it serves as explanation.

The Dying Animal meticulously explores what happens when a sexual predator falls victim to his prey. It doesn't hesitate to show how ridiculous, how craven, how ugly the strongest, vainest, cleverest male can be when he is completely at the mercy of his sexuality.

It is a book that every man should read - and therefore of course every woman too. It will be impossible for any man not to recognise parts of himself that he'd rather not see in Kepesh. It's also a book that every man of a certain age should read. Roth scrutinises the hubris of the senior male and finds him no finer than a fumbling adolescent.

At first The Dying Animal seems like the bare-faced manifesto of an alpha- plus male anti-hero. But of course - because this book is characteristic of Roth - it ends up somewhere less straightforward, and much more profound. It leaves you feeling you have been on an extraordinary, dangerous, journey: brief but intense. And miraculously the overwhelming emotion you are left with is tenderness.
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5.0 out of 5 stars A great book to read!, 5 Jan 2014
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This review is from: The Dying Animal (Kindle Edition)
It is a great book to read.
It is a love story between a professor and his student, with a huge gap in between their ages!
The love and passion between David Kepesh and Consuela is very beautifully written by Philip Roth.
Kepesh is fascinated by the beauty of Consuela who is one of his students.
While Consuela sees perfection in her senior literature professor Kepesh. She sees a role model, someone whom she can never compare with anybody else, someone unique in her eyes and because he is too old for her.
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1.0 out of 5 stars sexist and offensive, 24 Nov 2013
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This review is from: The Dying Animal (Kindle Edition)
Really unpleasant and sexist. Why does amazon require sixteen more words to review this? This novel is pornographic in a most unpleasant way.
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5.0 out of 5 stars Superb as always!, 29 Jan 2013
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This review is from: The Dying Animal (Paperback)
I love Philip Roth and there was never a chance of me changing my mind after reading this one. Truly a masterful author at work!
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4.0 out of 5 stars A great little book, 1 Mar 2006
This review is from: The Dying Animal (Paperback)
Passionate, uninhibited and hilarious - this is vintage Philip Roth. A shameless celebration of getting on and loving it.
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1 of 2 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars the older Roth looks at jealousy and mortality, 5 April 2013
This review is from: The Dying Animal (Paperback)
In the final David Kepesh book, Kepesh narrates, as a 70 year old, his affair when a 62 year old, with a then 24 year old former student. He also free associates, and tells us about the 60s, what it meant for him, what his life meant for his 42 year old son - who paradoxically tries to be a paragon of virtue both towards his wife and his mistress (as he feels Kepesh has set an awful role model), and experiences the death of a poet friend. Kepesh, unusually, fears that a younger man will take away his young mistress - someone like a younger Kepesh - though he actually seems to foul up the relationship without any help from others...

This is not exuberant, in the manner of earlier Roth but rather it is deeply considered, perhaps overmuch so...

This book forms the first of three novels in the recent Library of America volume containing also The Plot Against America and Exit Ghost...
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2 of 4 people found the following review helpful
2.0 out of 5 stars More meditations on sex and death, from the dirty-old-man of letters, 14 Aug 2009
This review is from: The Dying Animal (Paperback)
I've always had trouble with Philip Roth. I read him because I know he's supposed to be such a great writer, but I can't always be bothered to finish the book. Good writing isn't enough, I need more to keep me interested. He takes too long to get to the point, if there even is a point. But I read to the end of The Dying Animal and quite enjoyed it.

It was worth it because he really is a great writer, but he's not really my kind of writer. Is it unfair to say he's a dirty old man? I don't think so. He's quite old now, and he writes dirty, pornographic stuff sometimes. I don't give a damn about that, but it came across as a fantasy, this old man going on about having sex with a beautiful young woman, poking his tool in places it wasn't designed to go. How much does he really care about women, other than as sex objects?

Still, this is an easy read compared to a lot of his stuff and the reward is some good writing about what it meant to grow up in the sixties, the freedom to screw around, the end of the sanctity of marriage and how men have never really adapted to family life. I'd be surprised if many women like this stuff though.
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The Dying Animal
The Dying Animal by Philip Roth (Hardcover - 12 July 2001)
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