Found in the Street by Patricia Highsmith, Paperback | Barnes & Noble
Found in the Street

Found in the Street

by Patricia Highsmith
     
 

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“Fabulous, in all senses of that word . . . combining the best features of the suspense genre with the best of existential fiction—a thrilled reflection.”—Paul Theroux

Elsie Tyler turns heads wherever she goes. After leaving her hometown upstate for Greenwich Village, the charming young waitress soon finds herself surrounded by

Overview

“Fabulous, in all senses of that word . . . combining the best features of the suspense genre with the best of existential fiction—a thrilled reflection.”—Paul Theroux

Elsie Tyler turns heads wherever she goes. After leaving her hometown upstate for Greenwich Village, the charming young waitress soon finds herself surrounded by admirers, including Jack and Natalia Sutherland, a married couple who invite Elsie into their bohemian inner circle and help her launch a career as a model. Meanwhile, Ralph Linderman, a middle-aged security guard with a dog named God, is nursing his own obsession with Elsie. He sets out to protect her from the “bad company” she attracts, but his uninvited affections are overbearing, possibly even pathological. When Ralph finds Jack’s wallet on a morning stroll through the Village, and returns it, he is entirely unprepared for the complex maze of sexual obsession and disturbing psychological intrigue he is about to be drawn into.

Originally published in 1986, Found in the Street is classic Highsmith—an engrossing, unsettling thriller that explores the bleakest alleyways of human desire, and a kaleidoscopic portrait of 1980s New York City. Patricia Highsmith, author of Strangers on a Train and The Talented Mr. Ripley, has been called “one of the finest crime novelists” by the New York Times and is now considered one of the most original voices in twentieth-century American fiction.

Editorial Reviews

Publishers Weekly - Publisher's Weekly
Highsmith is best known for Strangers On a Train, basis for the prizewinning Hitchcock film, one of her 19 eerie novels. The new one pulses with the beat of Greenwich Village where chance brings ill-assorted people together. Ralph Linderman, a middle-aged security guard, finds a wallet and takes it to its owner, artist Jack Sutherland who lives nearby with his wife Natalia and their small daughter. Meeting young Elsie Tyler, a waitress, Jack learns that Ralph harasses her continually, warning her away from ``bad company.'' The girl's vivid beauty attracts Jack and bisexual Natalia, who team up with their bohemian friends and create a modeling career for Elsie, practically overnight. Trouble develops both from Ralph and from the girl's lesbian lovers, along with several curiously unrelated incidents that leave the reader vaguely unsatisfied. The story's intoxicating flavor and promise beg for a sounder structure than the ambiguous ending provides. (October 28)
Library Journal
Highsmith is best-known as a mystery writer. This novel is being presented as serious literature, but it's simply a psychological suspense thriller that sorely needs the conventional surprise ending. Although the author creates a compelling semi-villain (a snoopy, dotty old security guard) and builds a tense atmosphere, she lets the suspense fall flat after the climactic murder. The protagonists, a Greenwich Village couple who pride themselves on their sophistication and open marriage, come off as stagey and tedious as each falls into a sexually tinged friendship with a young lesbian. Both try to pin her subsequent murder on the snooper; subliminally they blame each other. With a bit less pretension this could have been a good mysteryand what's wrong with that? Joyce Smothers, Monmouth Cty Lib., Manalapan, N.J.
From the Publisher
Praise for Patricia Highsmith

“[Highsmith's] characters are irrational, and they leap to life in their very lack of reason. . . . Highsmith is the poet of apprehension rather than fear.”—Graham Greene

“For some obscure reason, one of our greatest modernist writers, Patricia Highsmith, has been thought of in her own land as a writer of thrillers. She is both. She is certainly one of the most interesting writers of this dismal century.”—Gore Vidal

“Miss Highsmith's genius is in presenting fantasy's paradox: successes are not what they seem. . . . Where in the traditional fairy tale the heroine turns the toad into a prince, in Miss Highsmith's fables the prince becomes a toad—success is nearly always fatal. . . . Combining the best features of the suspense genre with the best of existential fiction—a reflection—the stories are fabulous, in all the senses of that word.”—Paul Theroux

“She writes so fearlessly . . . about human relationships and the human heart. I always have this terrible sense of foreboding . . . you never feel safe.”—Cate Blanchett

“Patricia Highsmith's novels are peerlessly disturbing—bad dreams that keep us restless and thrashing for the rest of the night.”—Terrence Rafferty, New Yorker

“Highsmith, who can change reality to nightmare with one well-turned phrase, is a legendary crime writer.”—Cleveland Plain Dealer

Product Details

ISBN-13:
9780871133267
Publisher:
Grove/Atlantic, Inc.
Publication date:
03/28/1994
Series:
Highsmith, Patricia Series
Edition description:
1st American pbk. ed
Pages:
288
Sales rank:
1,258,441
Product dimensions:
5.53(w) x 8.27(h) x 0.76(d)

Meet the Author

Patricia Highsmith (1921–1995) was the author of more than twenty novels, including Strangers on a Train, The Price of Salt, and The Talented Mr. Ripley, as well as numerous short stories.

Brief Biography

Date of Birth:
January 19, 1921
Date of Death:
February 4, 1995
Place of Birth:
Fort Worth, Texas
Place of Death:
Locarno, Switzerland
Education:
B.A., Barnard College, 1942

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