Learn more Shop now Learn more Shop now Shop now Shop now Shop now Shop now Shop now Shop now Shop now Shop now Learn More Shop now Learn more Click Here Shop Kindle Amazon Music Unlimited for Family Shop now Shop Women's Shop Men's

Customer Review

on 10 March 2014
Saul Bellow's story begins with an interesting problem: Tommy Wilhelm, a down-and-out father of two boys, separated from his wife and recent job, is enticed by Dr. Tamkin, who might or might not be a conman, to speculate his meagre reserves in the commodity market. In this case we are talking about lard, which is not a major item in the market -- and might be Bellow's inside joke; if so, it is one of the few elements of humour that could lighten an otherwise progressively downtrodden tale.

The reader's attention is held by this slender premise, and it is the outcome of the speculation that holds our attention throughout. Even if the story is a short novel, the main theme, and the workings of the commodity market are never properly explained, while the digressions from the story, philosophical, psychological, marital, filial (the father's opinion takes a central role) and the increasingly dense reflections, the loaded and larded verbosity of Dr. Tamkin, become trying reading long before the end of the story. The unexpected final scene is insufficient to compensate for what is a rather tedious read.

The Swedish Nobel Committee made a telling comment when awarding Bellow the Nobel Prize: this writing exhibits "the mixture of rich picaresque novel and subtle analysis of our culture...." a "penetrating insight into the outer and inner complications that drive us to act".
The workings of the human psyche are central also to Bellow's other works: see 'Augie March' and 'Henderson the Rain King'.
They are not everyone's cup of tea -- the paucity of Amazon Customer Reviews are an indication of readers' limited interest.
0Comment|Was this review helpful to you?YesNoReport abuse| Permalink
What's this?

What are product links?

In the text of your review, you can link directly to any product offered on Amazon.com. To insert a product link, follow these steps:
1. Find the product you want to reference on Amazon.com
2. Copy the web address of the product
3. Click Insert product link
4. Paste the web address in the box
5. Click Select
6. Selecting the item displayed will insert text that looks like this: [[ASIN:014312854XHamlet (The Pelican Shakespeare)]]
7. When your review is displayed on Amazon.com, this text will be transformed into a hyperlink, like this:Hamlet (The Pelican Shakespeare)

You are limited to 10 product links in your review, and your link text may not be longer than 256 characters.


Product Details

4.3 out of 5 stars
55
4.3 out of 5 stars
£8.99+ Free shipping with Amazon Prime