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After Henry Paperback – April 27, 1993
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From Publishers Weekly
Copyright 1993 Reed Business Information, Inc.
From Library Journal
- Nancy Shires, East Carolina Univ., Greenville, N.C.
Copyright 1992 Reed Business Information, Inc. --This text refers to an out of print or unavailable edition of this title.
Top Customer Reviews
What's fascinating about those earlier books, and about After Henry (the most recent book of hers that I've read), is that there's at least one strong narrative line through all of them: they are books about the stories in which Americans enshroud the news. The White Album's title essay is famous for its opening line: "We tell ourselves stories in order to live." That's what appears in Bartlett's from The White Album, but it's basically vacuous without the rest of the paragraph -- a paragraph that summarizes, at an abstract level, every essay that she's written since (at least among the ones I've read):
"We tell ourselves stories in order to live. The princess is caged in the consulate. The man with the candy will lead the children into the sea.Read more ›
Even the section on Beltway politics has a distinct California feel about it. Didion's essay on the 1988 presidential campaigns centers largely on Michael Dukakis's trip to Taft High School in the rural, central part of the state. Her observations on Nancy Reagan are also, predictably, informed by the Reagans' political roots in Orange County. In our age of 24/7 cable-news punditry, the experience of reading Didion's observations on politics is quaint but rewarding, a throwback to an older form of political commentary where critics were only beginning to come to grips with the mediated superficiality of American electoral politics.
"California" is by far the most compelling section of the book. The essay "Pacific Distances" threads together some insightful observations of West Coast living Didion wrote for the now-defunct *New West* magazine. "Down at City Hall" is an engaging profile of Los Angeles's iconic former mayor Tom Bradley. And "Times Mirror Square" is a bravura recollection of the history of the Los Angeles Times newspaper, set against the backdrop of Southern California's cycles of boom and bust throughout the twentieth century.Read more ›
Most Recent Customer Reviews
After Henry is a gem. I depend on Didion to look under and around the public images she writes about. Her sentences on any subject give me clues as to how to look at all things.Published on October 30, 2013 by Amazon Customer