The Hermit of 69th Street: The Working Papers of Norbert Kosky

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New York, NY 1991 Mass-market paperback Very good. Mass market (rack) paperback. Glued binding. Audience: General/trade.

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Editorial Reviews

Walter Goodman
Mr. Kosinski comes off like a performer who takes more enjoyment in his act than is communicated to his audience, and who just won't stop. One leaves this exasperating work convinced that whether or not the author employed a ghost, this time out he could have used a more active editor. -- New York Times
Publishers Weekly - Publisher's Weekly
This ``autofiction'' by Norbert Korsky, a 55-year-old Holocaust survivor from the Poland-like country of ``Ruthenia,'' is presented by Kosinski as the ``working papers'' of a deceased writer whose life and times mirror Kosinski's own. Set in New York and Hollywood, the story is hobbled by its form, a relentless homage to Vladimir Nabokov. Almost every page is studded with footnotes and documentation, some consisting of newspaper leads and some culled from imaginary sources. Quotes from a panoply of writers are strewn throughout the text. It is as if Kosinski is obsessed with proving that in the hands of a gifted writer anything can be given meaning and relevance. There is much mystical hocus-pocus over the recurrence of the number 69 throughout these pages; the conceit includes incessant asides to the printer and the reader, signed N. .K and J. K. Kosinski makes thousands of allusions. In a reference to the Charles Manson murders, for example, he calls Sharon Tate Ophelia and the other victims Rosencrantz and Mr. and Mrs. Guildenstern. This is a clever tour de force, but difficult to define as a novel, not to be compared with The Painted Bird, Steps or Being There for sheer quality of writing. It's a self-conscious demonstration of technique, delivered with a wink and a smirk. (June)
Library Journal
$19.45. f Tantric Jew, macho enigma, and first-rate second-rate novelist, Norbert Kosky chronicles the composition of his ninth book, an ``autofictional'' account of a burned-out writer who bears an uncanny resemblance to Kosinski. The huge punning textedited by J.K., or Jay Kayis accompanied by an equally huge collection of scholarly footnotes, evidencing a lifelong obsession with the Holocaust, cabala, contemporary literary theory, and girlie magazines. As Kosky boasts, the footnotes alone are worth the price of admission. The book has plenty of faultsit is sophomoric, sexist, and self-indulgentbut it is also fun. Easily the best novel Kosinski has written in years. Edward B. St. John, Loyola Law Sch. Lib., Los Angeles
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Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9780821733332
  • Publisher: Kensington Publishing Corporation
  • Publication date: 3/1/1991
  • Format: Mass Market Paperback
  • Edition description: REPRINT
  • Pages: 1
  • Product dimensions: 4.23 (w) x 6.88 (h) x 1.52 (d)

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