Overview

 

“Elkin’s . . . best—a funny, melancholy, frightening, scabrous, absolutely American compendium that may turn out to be our classic about radio.” —The New York Times Book Review Since childhood, Dick Gibson has longed for a successful radio career to make him a household name. Seeking to hone his craft, Dick travels from stations in Nebraska and New Jersey to the Armed Forces Radio in the Pacific Theater during the Second World War, interviewing crooks, con artists, and hypnotists along the way. His ...

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The Dick Gibson Show

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Overview

 

“Elkin’s . . . best—a funny, melancholy, frightening, scabrous, absolutely American compendium that may turn out to be our classic about radio.” —The New York Times Book Review Since childhood, Dick Gibson has longed for a successful radio career to make him a household name. Seeking to hone his craft, Dick travels from stations in Nebraska and New Jersey to the Armed Forces Radio in the Pacific Theater during the Second World War, interviewing crooks, con artists, and hypnotists along the way. His show ignites the imaginations of all who listen to it—until one fateful night when a studio guest’s irresistible influence on Dick and all those listening to him will change their lives forever. Spirited and compelling, The Dick Gibson Show is a laugh-out-loud journey through the world of talk radio and a compulsively readable account of one man’s descent into the dark echo chamber of American media. This ebook features rare photos and never-before-seen documents from the author’s estate and from the Stanley Elkin archives at Washington University in St. Louis.

 

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Editorial Reviews

New York Times Book Review
"This is Elkin's third novel and his best--a funny, melancholy, frightening, scabrous, absolutely American compendium that may turn out to be our classic about radio."
Library Journal
"Most of Elkin's prose is alive, with its wealth of detail and specifically American metaphors, and the surreal elements in the narrative are tightly controlled," said LJ's reviewer of this odd novel (LJ 6/1/71), which concerns the host and guests of a late-night radio call-in show. Though no doubt tame compared to the daily insanity of the Jerry Springer show, this remains "compulsively readable."
From the Publisher
"A divine exploiter of the idiocies and intricacies of our language." —John Irving

Dalkey Archive Press

"In The Dick Gibson Show[Elkin] turns that friend of midnight drivers, the trivial and dreary all-night talk show, into a fast, loud circus of bickering and outrageous consciously Chaucerian tales.... It's raw energy that Elkin loves.... He's Ahab smashing through the mask with jokes. Grizzly reality is his straight man." —John Gardner

Dalkey Archive Press

"This is Elkin's third novel and his best—a funny, melancholy, frightening, scabrous, absolutely American compendium that may turn out to be our classics about radio." —Joseph McElroy, New York Times Book Review

Dalkey Archive Press

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Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9781453204313
  • Publisher: Open Road
  • Publication date: 10/26/2010
  • Sold by: Barnes & Noble
  • Format: eBook
  • Edition description: B&N epub
  • Pages: 335
  • Sales rank: 1,204,516
  • File size: 2 MB

Meet the Author

Stanley Elkin (1930–1995) was an award-winning author of novels, short stories, and essays. Born in the Bronx, Elkin received his BA and PhD from the University of Illinois and in 1960 became a professor of English at Washington University in St. Louis where he taught until his death. His critically acclaimed works include the National Book Critics Circle Award–winners George Mills (1982) and Mrs. Ted Bliss (1995), as well as the National Book Award finalists The Dick Gibson Show (1972), Searches and Seizures (1974), and The MacGuffin (1991). His book of novellas, Van Gogh’s Room at Arles, was a finalist for the PEN Faulkner Award.

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Read an Excerpt

From Part 1: Vita; Dick's Log: When Dick Gibson was a little boy he was not Dick Gibson. And he could get Omaha, could get Detroit, could get Memphis; New Orleans he could get. And once—it was not a particularly clear or cold night; for that matter it may even have rained earlier—he got Seattle, Washington. He listened almost until sign-off, hoping that the staff announcer would say something about the wattage put out by the station. Then, after midnight news but before the amen of the sermonette, the station fadded irrecoverably. He'd learned never to fool with the dial, that it did no good when a signal waned to reclaim it with some careful, surgical twist a hlf-dozen kilocycles to the right or left. It was best to wait through the babble and static for the return of the electronic tide. Often it would come, renewed for its hiatus, its cosmic romp and drift, strongly present again after its mysterious trip to the universe. This time it didn't.
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