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Therapy Paperback – July 1, 1996
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From Publishers Weekly
Copyright 1996 Reed Business Information, Inc.
From Library Journal
Copyright 1995 Reed Business Information, Inc. --This text refers to an out of print or unavailable edition of this title.
Top Customer Reviews
There is a fair amount of social class consciousness in _Therapy_. Tubby is from the working class but has made a fortune by writing a successful television series. In a certain sense he is the best that we can hope for from the nouveau riche: he is humane in spite of his wealth. His wife came from genteel poverty and has aged into a rather severe and vain woman. His friend Amy has risen from the working middle class into the show biz upper middle and more fully embraces the materialism and pretension than does Tubby. The quest to rediscover the whereabouts of his childhood girlfriend combines the themes of existentialism and class consciousness in a way that is both effortless and admirable.
The entire book is told from Tubby's point of view, written in the form of a journal and monologues. His reliability as a narrator is called into question by the content of the monologues until you realize who the author is. A very clever narrative device, but not overly clever. You don't feel manipulated because of the revelations that it produces.
I think perhaps that the only reason I have for not giving the book 5 stars is that I am not yet middle aged and so I didn't experience the Internal Derangement of the Mind that I might if (or when) I read this book 20 years from now.
A cute stylistic trick is to have Passmore "look up" the meaning of any unusual key word the author introduces. We learn something that way (although not ordinary Briticisms like wanker, clanger, kefuffle, yonks, phutted and pong, gazump and gobsmacked). It's curious how many out-of-print versions are listed for this book. My copy... has an unusual leathery-soft cover and rough yellowing pages; reminds me of fragile post-war Penquin books, tattered British "pulps."
David Lodge is one of my favorite authors and along with Malcolm Bradbury, who was his closest writer friend - they're both major exponents of the campus novel genre - he is surely one of the top satirical writers of the 20th century (no, he's not dead yet - look for more masterpieces from him!)
You know what is the most surprising thing about this book? It was first published in 1995! Yes, that's some fifteen years before we started talking earnestly about Boomer Lit, with the creation of a Goodreads Group to discuss Boomer Lit. Yet Therapy is quintessential Boomer Lit. It hits on all the major points that make for a top Boomer Lit read:
- a mature adult protagonist facing a major life transition as his marriage and job unravel;
- a range of challenges that are typically those boomers are facing today;
- coping mechanisms and complex characters that are the result of a lifetime of experience.
The plot and characters are not simple, only a mature writer could have written this with the necessary depth of experience and nuances in sensibilities.Read more ›
Most Recent Customer Reviews
I picked up this book used--as a psychologist, the title caught my eye. Unfortunately, the title turned out to be mostly a misnomer. Read morePublished 2 months ago by Reviewer Dr. Beth
This may very well be the most entertaining book I have ever read, and it bears repeated readingsPublished 15 months ago by Tim Wu
Gotta be one of the best books for me. Great great true satire on sex, marriage, religion, relationships, dancing!!. Tubby and Sally are right on for my ex and me. Read morePublished 16 months ago by tennessee
One of Lodge's best - funny, smart, insightful, flows great. I am addicted to Lodge and this is the best. Read morePublished 23 months ago by Mickey
The main character is living a drama, and sometimes dramas are boring. He is also depressed which adds some pages of boredom. But most of the time it is fun and inspiring. Read morePublished on May 8, 2014 by Peter Senna Tschudin
Well written, funny and wise. Such a pleasure to read an author who is clever and writes with such knowledge. Highly recommendedPublished on April 30, 2014 by Lina
This book had a lot going for it - it was both funny and sad, it had interesting characters and a very good story. Read morePublished on November 12, 2013 by Pelican
Best mid-life crisis book ever - graphic language, satisfying realities. The younger set will not appreciate it until they read it in their later lives.Published on January 3, 2013 by Susan K. Russo