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To young novelist Marijane Meaker, however, Highsmith was more than a role model. Shortly after the two met in a New York City lesbian bar, they became lovers and embarked on a two year romance amidst the bohemian set of Greenwich Village and the literary crowd of Fire Island. There, the pair navigated the underground lesbian scene, lunched with literary stars like Janet Flanner, shared intimacies, and gossiped with abandon. Written with wit and brassy candor, Highsmith: A Romance of 1950s is a revealing look at the controversial icon of popular American fiction.
Posted September 5, 2003
Although it is called a romance, I don't think it quite is. I likes the relationship between Pat and Marijane, it was real. It said they had their differences, both being writers under the same roof, but they share time together like a schedule. The only REAL romance that goes on is them for their cats, and them for each other. It does say that sex for them was always good, but their ideas always clash. The ending is a great way to sympathize with the rest of the novel saying how crooked Pat is, with her drinking and opinions about Jews or blacks, or even people like her, people who are lesbian. The last few pages are the most sentimental, I think. It totally relates to the wanderlust seen in Pat's lesbian novel, 'The Price of Salt.'Was this review helpful? Yes NoThank you for your feedback. Report this reviewThank you, this review has been flagged.
Posted July 2, 2003
What I liked about this memoir was that it described the times, the 50's: the Mafia-run lesbian bars, the risks attached to living as a lesbian, all of that and then there is the writing life, how two independent women made their livings solely by writing, not an easy accomplishment. Highsmith, of course, is there in all her glory, although she proves not to be so glorious in her later years. But I can see her in this book as a person, not as a caricature or as someone the person describing her didn't know. You feel Meaker really knows what she's talking about, and she is not afraid, either, to describe her own flaws. I couldn't put this book down, which surprised me because the internet stuff about PH rarely gives any new insight to what made her tick. This book does. Is Karen Queeg one of Meaker's pseudonyms? Anyway, this was a FIND for me.Was this review helpful? Yes NoThank you for your feedback. Report this reviewThank you, this review has been flagged.
Posted June 30, 2003
If you haven't read it yet, I envy you. I didn't want it to end. I am a big fan of Patricia Highsmith and Ripley and this gave so much insight into her writing and her life. Meaker is a smart, funny, honest writer, and she covers it all; gay life in the '50s, how two writers survive (or don't survive) together, and marvelous insights into Highsmith's motivations for Ripley et al. One puzzling thing about Barnes and Noble ... They list two writers Meaker and a second writer named Karen Quigg. My copy of the book only lists Meaker. They should correct this listing.Was this review helpful? Yes NoThank you for your feedback. Report this reviewThank you, this review has been flagged.
Posted June 10, 2003
Even if you're not a fan of Patricia Highsmith, you'll enjoy this memoir for its intriguing portrait of New York social life in the 1950s, as well as the insights it provides into the 'writing life' of two women authors. Meaker writes with assurance and candor. I appreciated the fact that she doesn't spell things out for the reader, nor does she make excuses for some of the dubious personal behavior (including, occasionally, her own) that's on display in this book. Highsmith : A Romance of the Fifties is a memorable portrait of some memorable people -- give it a try!Was this review helpful? Yes NoThank you for your feedback. Report this reviewThank you, this review has been flagged.