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Though Hank tries to apply William of Occam's rational approach (choose simplicity) to each increasingly absurd situation, and even has a dog named after the philosopher, he does seem to cause most of his own enormous difficulties. Not least when he grabs a goose and threatens to off a duck (sic) a day until he gets his budget. The fact that he is also wearing a fake nose and glasses and doing so in front of a TV camera complicates matters even further. Hank tries to explain to one class that comedy and tragedy don't go together, but finds the argument "runs contrary to their experience. Indeed it may run contrary to my own." It runs decidedly against Richard Russo's approach in Straight Man, and the result is a hilarious and touching novel. --This text refers to the Hardcover edition.
I wish I had done research on Occam's Razor ahead of reading the book. I think it would have made the protagonist's view point clearer in my mind. Read morePublished 10 days ago by Jane W. Criswell
Richard Russo is one of my favorite authors and Nobody's Fool and Empire Falls are a couple of my favorite books. This is a little different, set in a university. Read morePublished 11 days ago by Outdoorsman
I probably am prejudiced coming from Maine, but I think Russo is a very good writer. My library's book discussion group started with Empire Falls and I just keep reading him when... Read morePublished 1 month ago by 42 West Main
It started out good, but got tiring before the end. I was glad when it finallh ended. Don't know if I would recommend it or not.Published 2 months ago by Ellen