Philip Roth's new novel is a candidly intimate yet universal story of loss, regret and stoicism.
The fate of Roth's everyman is traced from his first shocking confrontation with death on the idyllic beaches of his childhood summers, to his old age, when he is rended by observing the deterioration of his contemporaries and his own physical woes.
A successful commercial artist with a New York ad agency, he is the father of two sons from a first marriage who despise him and a daughter from a second marriage who adores him.
He is the beloved brother of a good man whose physical well-being comes to arouse his bitter envy, and the lonely ex-husband of three very different women with whom he's made a mess of marriage.
In the end he is a man who has become what he does not want to be.
Everyman takes its title from an anonymous fifteenth-century allegorical play whose theme is the summoning of the living to death.
- Format: Paperback
- Pages: 192 pages
- Publisher: Vintage Publishing
- Publication Date: 05/04/2007
- Category: Modern & contemporary fiction (post c 1945)
- ISBN: 9780099501466
Showing 1 - 2 of 2 reviews.
Review by jeniwren
Picked this one up off my shelf after the First Tuesday bookclub recently discussed 'Portnoys Complaint'. This is Roth's most recent novel and even though it is fine writing it is possibly one of the most depressing I have read. The story begins with the unnamed main character's funeral and then goes back over his life as a young Jewish boy who helps out at his fathers jewellery business , his marriages, affairs and relationships with ex wives, children and family. There is particular focus on his various illnesses and numerous surgeries which he explores in regard to aging, death and mortality. Roth is getting on in years and there is no doubt he is thinking deeply about his declining years and end of life.
Review by charlottejones952
This book is about an old man's life concentrating on loss, regret and stoicism. I found this book very bleak and depressing to be honest. It is very short and I think that if you are after something that is emotional then this book would be perfect as it is very emotion driven rather than plot. This feels strangely like a biography written from a third person perspective as it shows a man's life until death. Instead of telling the reader everything, it seems to only concentrate on the negative aspects of his life and this is why I felt I could only give this book 3 out of 5 stars.