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Ellow It s from the soul of a man who had seen all the incredible folly and pain of life close up from the depths of a deeply hurt but all forgiving HeartAnd he was not afraid to laugh out loud at it allI found its plot ntirely believable and you know a LOT of outlandish things seem ENTIRELY credible to an old guy like me after all I ve been through Before I met my wife in 1977 Heartbreaks galoreSo like MorticiaMany of my readers may have been broken arly on in life s journey in a manner similar to my own xperienceFor when life breaks you like a life s journey in a manner similar to my own Helpmate experienceFor when life breaks you like a twig what do you do You do like I did You try to make good friendships for yourself That helps toase the painBut MY mistake was being a bit too friendly with my Art, Culture, and Cuisine: Ancient and Medieval Gastronomy enemies the social predators in the circle of my real world acuaintances That s commonly known as currying favour What does thatxpression mean You may not know this but it means to disarm our potential nemies by grooming their strengths as with a curry comb for horses In other words we FLATTER THEIR VANITYWhat started out sounding charitable NOW seems like a cowardly form of self protection Because in reality we re just feeding the fire We re making our nemies STRONGERJust as trouble awaits us when we do this so it always crouches for attack at Uncle BennHe creates much trouble for himself than he ver had by currying favour with the predators around him Like his craftily unscrupulous Uncle Vizzner Or his wealthy fianc herself both ready to tilt unwary Benn s wagon over into A World of HurtLove Bites And love Bleeds an it s driving ole Benn to his KneesIts main characters Benn and Kenneth are Gypsy World: The Silence of the Living and the Voices of the Dead endearing and thepic aporia at its core is universally true Because it s our very own first lasting
AND ULTIMATELY UNTIE ABLE KNOT ORIGINAL ultimately untie able Knot Original that is universally true because we ve all forgotten we re only human and we re all castaways in life We ve got the misbegotten idea into our heads that LIFE SHOULD BE FUNAporia because we all keep creating inescapable spider webs of self deceit out of the barren Fact of our Fall from Grace to assuage our guilt at being born humanIt s so trueBenn and Kenneth s story though may seem to you a bit TOO human and lostLike those chocolates in a box that surprise us by being hard on the outside but gooey in the middleIn a busy busy world like ours there s minimal tolerance for people who overtly wear their hearts on their sleeves Know what Bellow s holding a MIRROR in front of our outwardly set but inwardly Bryozoan Evolution endlesslymoting faces hard but gooeyLike us neither Benn nor his young nephew Kenneth know themselves too well or their own spider webs so their Crisis and Continuity at the Abbasid Court: Formal and Informal Politics in the Caliphate of Al-Muqtadir (295-320/908-32) emotions are at loosends when they re alone And that s most of the timeAnd when they ve found someone in their lives MUCH WORSE Pessoa at least was honest Silvers Edge enough to AGREE that he was at loosends when alone but acutely antsy in publicAre WE so honestLike Benn Kenneth we know our chosen fields of work well and we re attracted to certain kinds of attractive people but we don t know themselves WELL ENOUGH to make relationships than things that just don t workBellow portrays BK xactly that way and the result is devilishly comical I think he intended his story as a double dged sword that not only slices clean through Benn and Kenneth but all those of us who tend to take ourselves too seriouslyAnd I m no Going Berserk exception I still SUIRM when I think of Uncle Benn s tragicomic taleBut still Bellow s Human Comedy is so muchasier to take than Balzac s unsettled group of tragicomedies because we are likely to see ourselves in Bellow s opus with a dash of spicy fun And relatively happy ndingsBoth Balzac and Bellow were in the same ballpark thoughBut Bellow downplays the sorrow and because he sees Benn and his nephew as such decent lost souls and because all their close calls seem stage managed by their Guardian Angels Life seems to let them off lightlyAnd they come out of these near misses with vil minded people IN ONE COMICAL PIECEIf you have a crowded mind you will get claustrophobia from this book It can suffocate you if you re not relaxed But I ve got an ideaRead this gem during a getaway dream vacation after all this current fuss is over when all your cares and anxieties have vanished far from the madding crowdAt a distance from all the hubbub you ll get a good chuckle over how HILARIOUS our own hard Human Comedy can be ON THE EBULLIENT SURFACEAnd you may recover a bit of your lost sticky side too when you see your own hidden sweet gooey centre beneath as if for the first timeDon t it make you suirmGood Bellow s done his job. The door to a flood of new torments As Kenneth grapples with his own problems involving his unusual lady friend Treckie the two men try to figure out why gifted and intelligent people invariably find themselves knee deep in the garbage of a personal life . .
Rich Get Richer Reallyget richer really already have money uick scheme the nephew with a young woman who has had a child with him but prefers men who beat her up The plot though is not nearly as interesting as the relationship The writing not surprisingly is very very fine This is a hard novel to get into There is the usual Bellovian intellectual overload to be got through and the ccentricities of the characters are something of a barrier And then there s the feeling that maybe we ve seen Bellow xplore the male incomprehension of women once too often But once you re into it and have worked out the various relationships and conflicts it s a rewarding novel not least because it is often very funny It s a novel about a man and his uncle I don t recall having seen that central relationship in a novel before Apocalyptic Cartography: Thematic Maps and the End of the World in a Fifteenth-Century Manuscript except maybe Tristram Shandy Kenneth Trachtenberg is the son Benn Crader never had and Benn is the father Kenneth perhaps wishes he had had But there is something a smidge homoerotic about their closeness too Since this is Bellow we re talking about both are intellectuals Benn is a famous botanist whose only truly passionate relationship is with plants Kenneth is a junior academic specializing in Russian studies Benn is a widower remarrying after years of the solitary life Kenneth has a daughter by a woman who won t marry him And much of the novel deals with the very peculiar relationships thatach has with women who seem to fling themselves at these very odd men The central plot deals with Benn s relationship with his younger beautiful second wife Matilda who seems to have married him primarily for his celebrity she nvisions herself presiding over a salon but also because there is a chance that he can become a millionaire That involves winning over a shady politician who also happens to Benn s uncle there are layers of avuncularity in the novel and who may have cheated Benn and his sister Kenneth s mother out of a fortune Everybody in the novel wants something Kenneth wants to marry the mother of his daughter xcept Benn who just wants to be left alone with his plants And in the course of working things out Bellow gives us reflections on sex on death on marriage on botany on being Jewish on Europe and America on academia on law and politics and on the movie Psycho This is another book that is hard to get into at first I think that the beginning of this book is filled with a lot of academic philosophy in the guise of horticulture that it is hard to read the underlying message to love and humanity but in the Infamous end Bellow ties all of it together in one fell swoop A great book It is when I finish marvelous books like this that I miss my father and mother most I would so like to share my readingxperience with them After all they opened my Walled eyes to the wonderful world of reading Don t think this is uite as good as his otherarlier novella Seize the Day But I read them so far apart and never taught this one though I did Carpe Diem several times always translated the whole book into Latin NOT Also taught his Mr Sammler which I consider one of the best novels ver written and certainly the best by my PhD advisor s best friend Pic of Leonard Unger and Saul Bellow in Rolling Stone Leonard cracking up Saul The University of Minnesota school culture held that Saul and Leonard a TS Eliot xpert among other writers translated the first four lines of the Wasteland at the Faculty Club over lunchinto Yiddish This is Saul Bellow at his best witty provocative urbane and wise all rolled up in one rollicking plot Unlike in some of Bellow s other novels where plot takes a back seat to character this novel offers a compelling plot that keeps you breathlessly turning the pages to find out what comes next Somehow I had missed this novel when it came out way back when and now I m itching to read of Bellow s novels that somehow scaped my attention Read from March 14 18 2017Reviewed March 19 2017Shelved October 12 2010 More Die of Heartbreak is a novel of ideas which also manages to be a novel about vaginas Our highly skilled writers can pull this off The Magic Mountain was a no. Kenneth Trachtenberg the witty and ccentric narrator of More Die of Heartbreak has left his native Paris for the Midwest He has come to be near his beloved uncle the world renowned botanist Benn Crader self described plant visionary While his studies take ,
Vel of ideas which was also a novel about lungsThe
First Person Narrator Kenneth Trachtenberg Is A 35 Year Oldperson narrator Kenneth Trachtenberg is a 35 year old literature professor who grew up in Paris with a philandering father amid dinners with Alexander Koj ve He feels of a kinship with his Uncle Benn a botanist at a midwestern university and moves to the same school The focus of the novel is Uncle s failed romantic relationships after his wife s death in particular his marriage to the much younger beautiful and wealthy Matilda Layamon Kenneth would like to marry the flighty mother of his toddler daughter a woman who likes to be bruised forming a secondary plotline along with Kenneth and Uncle s attempts to get some money out of another lderly uncle who sold a family plot of land where an normous skycraper was subseuently built bilking the relatives out of millionsIn the Midwest minds are slower Uncle tells Kenneth whose thoughts run to Karl Popper and Hegel Swedenborg and William Blake while Uncle s reside with arctic lichens But both men can t stop thinking about the female morphology The kind of woman Kenneth prefers is built closer to the ground For my taste Matilda had too much Snowbound Seduction elevation To hold nothing back I kept wondering How long do those legs go on and where and how do they attach to the trunk what happens at the point of attachment You ve got no truth to life if you omit such masculine conjectures and you will see thatven Uncle for all his vegetable reveries had In the Surgical Theatre entertained similar picturesMatilda s father a doctor had also given her anatomy a great deal of thought At anxpensive lunch he tells Uncle I ve always been curious about Matilda s biology In the delivery room when she was born and I remember this well we physicians had to puzzle over the baby Was it a boy or a girlYou ve got to be joking said BennI m only saying that at first nobody was Hinterlands and Commodities: Place, Space, Time and the Political Economic Development of Asia Over the Long Eighteenth Century exactly sure Some kids are smooth and beautiful at birth others look as if they were delivered by an avalancheUncle is subjected to much than just talk about female genitals In Kyoto he and Kenneth are taken to a strip club where the women float above the rapt silent crowd in plexiglas cages dilating themselves with their fingers Thisxperience leaves Uncle shaken and it is soon followed by one where he visits Dr Layamon at his hospital Matilda s father puts him in a white lab coat and takes him on rounds where all his lderly female patients with hip injuries obligingly reveal their mounds of Venus Uncle begins to have arrhythmia as a result of Layamon s
a movie watching Psycho with Matilda Uncle develops a sudden of her shoulders with Anthony Perkins It is jarring If only he can avoid views of her shoulders perhaps the marriage will be a success But several months later he cries to Kenneth Why are Matilda s breasts so far apart It turns out that perhaps Uncle isn t ready for love Hit me on the head with a hammer and I see ten Matildas One of those I love passionatelyAlong the way Bellow paints yet another wonderful portrait of Chicago with its grittiness its political corruption its neighborhoods skycrapers and xpressways the university where he taught Unfortunately for some reason he pretends this is not Chicago but some other midwestern city much like Chicago which is disorienting Rating this is xtremely difficult Looking at it as a whole I think it is of an OK than a good read I wanted to figure out what the book was saying This is what kept me reading You cannot view spoilergo against your nature You must follow your instincts Education and book knowledge goes only so far hide spoiler The novel More Die of Heartbreak is a dark intellectual satire written in Saul Bellow s idiosyncratic highbrow style It is a story of two modest savants an uncle and his nephew According to one of his colleagues and colleagues are generally the last to say such things Benn was a botanist of a high level of distinction I don t suppose that this will cut much ice with most people Why should they care about the histogenesis of the leaf or adventitious roots I wouldn t myself if it hadn t been for Uncle Scientists Unless they do cancer research or guide you through the universe on television like Carl Sagan what is there to them The public wants heart transplants it wants a cure for AIDS reversals of senility It doesn t care a hoot f ARE YOU UNHAPPY DARLING MORTICIA OH YES YES COMPLETELY Uncle Benn s favourite Charles Addams Cartoon uoted in More Die of HeartbreakI m going out on a limb on this one It was one of my absolute FAVOURITES from the pen of Nobel laureate Saul Im around the world Benn a restless spirit has not been able to satisfy his longings after his first marriage and lives from affair to affair and from bliss to breakdown Imagining that a settled xistence will nd his anguish Benn ties the knot again opening.prankIn movie theater watching Psycho with Matilda Uncle develops a sudden