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Charlie P (Green Integer)

2 customer reviews
ISBN-13: 978-1933382050
ISBN-10: 1933382058
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Editorial Reviews

From Publishers Weekly

In this zany, episodic picaresque, anxiety and erections rule the life of the title Charlie, a priapic, Woody Allen–style flaneur, "Peckerhead and Prophet. Pariah and Prodigal Son... all things to all people and nothing to himself." As Charlie tells his shrink, it was a domineering mother who turned him into an amiable, sex-mad slacker: she wanted him to be a novelist. Instead, Charlie interviews possible agents and publishers without writing a word—or indeed reading a single book, despite the fact that he has compiled a massive library. At every turn through Charlie's mild misadventures, Kalich tries to go over the top: in one episode, Charlie misplaces his penis and envisions the happy life to come without the trouble of a sex life. In another episode he falls victim to a bizarre series of accidents, losing all five senses and suffering manifold indignities in a Kafkaesque hospital, right up to having his ass removed and sewn on to the body of another. It's hard to see where Kalich is going with so much coy buffoonery, but he hints that Charlie's behavior is all too typical of an ongoing cultural crisis of masculinity. This book doesn't help. (Jan. 16)
Copyright © Reed Business Information, a division of Reed Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.

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Product Details

  • Series: Green Integer (Book 132)
  • Paperback: 250 pages
  • Publisher: Green Integer (October 1, 2005)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 1933382058
  • ISBN-13: 978-1933382050
  • Product Dimensions: 4.2 x 0.5 x 6 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 6.4 ounces (View shipping rates and policies)
  • Average Customer Review: 3.5 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (2 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #8,800,711 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

More About the Author

Richard Kalich was born in New York and grew up on the Upper West side. His mother always encouraged her sons to be writers, scholars, artists, poets. Kalich certainly fulfilled her wishes; he went on to write some of the most original American fiction in a generation.
He is the author of Central Park West Trilogy which includes three of his previous novels: The Nihilesthete (1987), Penthouse F (2010) and Charlie P (2005).
He has been nominated for the National Book Award and for a Pulitzer Prize. His novels are internationally acclaimed and widely translated: his novels have been published in Bulgaria, Denmark, England, Germany, Holland, Israel, Russia, Sweden, Turkey, and Japan. Kalich was born and lives in New York where he co-directs a film company with his twin brother, Robert Kalich, also a writer.

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Most Helpful Customer Reviews

1 of 1 people found the following review helpful By Alvin Guixé on March 3, 2006
Format: Paperback
Richard Kalich has written another important book, this one begging repeated reads, unfolding as it does like a dream, slippery and too fast. Unlike the protagonist of Kalich's prior masterwork, "The Nihilisthete," the reality in which Charlie P (dys)functions is a suspended one, a purgatorial Neverland where all and nothing are perpetually at war, a warped mirror in which his own image is terminally distorted. Kalich renders Charlie P's crises - his perverted sense of the possible, his unrelenting impotencies - with a certain solemn absurdity belonging to someone who knows this reality to be yours, too. It is through this quality especially that Kalich's heavyweight bloodline can be traced: Fernando Pessoa, Max Frisch, Franz Kafka, among others.

If you're after something that will go through you like a bowl of fiber, look elsewhere. If not, do yourself a favor and read this short, disproportionately heavy book. It will take up residence in your guts.
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful By L. Wex on November 9, 2008
Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
I love, love love The Nihilesthete. But this book was a bit tiresome. I see that the main character is self-centered and has a personality dictated by the proverbial winds. But there is no setting whatsoever, and really no character within. You're locked inside the head of an unformed personality that is formed, unformed and reformed over and over again. But the reader gets but the slightest of information, and as a result you feel as if you're only getting a live feed straight from the brain of a person with a personality disorder--without context, a sense of setting or the balance of other characters/voices. The idea is an interesting one, just not developed IMHO.
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