- Mass Market Paperback
- Publisher: Ballantine Books (February 12, 1985)
- Language: English
- ISBN-10: 0345319664
- ISBN-13: 978-0345319661
- Product Dimensions: 6.8 x 4.1 x 0.8 inches
- Shipping Weight: 4.8 ounces
- Average Customer Review: 3.7 out of 5 stars See all reviews (3 customer reviews)
- Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #9,102,586 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)
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Stay Hungry Mass Market Paperback – February 12, 1985
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Top Customer Reviews
The novel is better art than the film and accounts for some of the eccentricities. Arnold's character, Joe Santo the bodybuilder, is incongruous in the film, while in the novel we find that the be-sandled Saint Joe with long black hair moves through the book like a messiah figure, or at least a prophet, spreading the gospel of staying hungry: "Being comfortable's like a profession or a religion, or uh, a philosophy. You get in there and you can't get out. You get fat." In a scene entirely left out from the film, the characters attend a rodeo where they participate in sacrament-like activities. Joe then helps one of the characters fulfill his dream of riding a rodeo bull, rewarding him for "staying hungry". However, the character is almost killed. Likewise, Mary Tate and the protagonist's lives fall apart in their own ways after briefly experiencing an ecstatic life together. Santo references Keats' poem Ode to Melancholy, from which we learn that pleasure and pain are inextricably linked, and that only those who are prepared to experience Melancholy can take Joy to the limit.
In the end, the protagonist does not sell his inherited family home over the mountain as in the film, but retreats into it, too weak to do what's necessary to stay hungry and experience the cycles of joy and sorrow that the Romantics make into the meaning of life. What are we, the reader, to make of this?Read more ›