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Jack Holmes and His Friend: A Novel
     

Jack Holmes and His Friend: A Novel

3.0 5
by Edmund White
 

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Many straight men and gay men are best friends, but if the phenomenon is an urban commonplace it has never been treated before as the focus of a major novel.

Jack Holmes is in love, but the man he loves never shares his bed. The other men Jack sleeps with never last long and he dallies with several women. He sees a shrink and practices extreme discretion

Overview

Many straight men and gay men are best friends, but if the phenomenon is an urban commonplace it has never been treated before as the focus of a major novel.

Jack Holmes is in love, but the man he loves never shares his bed. The other men Jack sleeps with never last long and he dallies with several women. He sees a shrink and practices extreme discretion about his gay adventures since the book begins in the 1960s, before gay liberation, and ends after the advent of AIDS in the 1980s. Jack's friend, Will Wright, comes from old stock, has aspirations to be a writer, and like Jack works on the Northern Review, a staid cultural quarterly. Will is shy and lonely-and Jack introduces him to the beautiful, brittle young woman he will marry. Over the years Will discovers his sensuality and almost destroys his marriage in doing so. Towards the end of the 1970s Jack's and Will's lives merge as they both become accomplished libertines.

Jack Holmes and his Friend deploys Edmund White's wonderful perceptions of American society to dazzling effect, as character after character is delicately and colourfully rendered and one social milieu after another glows in the reader's mind. He is a connoisseur of the nuances of personality and mood, and here unveils his very human cast in all their radical individuality. New York itself is a principle character with its old society and its bohemians rich and poor, with its sleek European immigrants and its rough-and-tumble transplanted Midwesterners. With narrative daring and a gifted sense of the rueful submerged drama of life, the novel is a beautifully sculpted exploration of sexuality and sensibility.

Product Details

ISBN-13:
9781608197248
Publisher:
Bloomsbury USA
Publication date:
01/24/2012
Sold by:
Barnes & Noble
Format:
NOOK Book
Pages:
400
Sales rank:
160,713
File size:
2 MB

Meet the Author

An esteemed novelist and cultural critic, Edmund White is the author of many books including the autobiographical A Boy's Own Story; My Lives; a biography of poet Arthur Rimbaud; the highly acclaimed Hotel de Dream and, most recently, the memoir City Boy. Edmund White lives in New York City and teaches writing at Princeton University. He is an Officier of the Ordre des Arts et des Lettres and a recipient of the Award for Literature from the American Academy of Arts and Letters. He lives in New York.
Edmund White (b. Ohio, USA, 1940) is the author of many critically acclaimed books, the most recent being The Flaneur. He was made an officer in the French Ordre des Arts et des Lettres and won a literary prize from the Festival of Deauville. He now teaches at Princeton University. His acclaimed autobiography, My Lives, was published by Bloomsbury in 2006, while his play, Terre Haute, was published by Methuen Drama in 2007.

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Jack Holmes and His Friend 3 out of 5 based on 0 ratings. 5 reviews.
Ken-in-Arlington More than 1 year ago
As enjoyable as anything he has written. Highly recommended.
Darshan1 More than 1 year ago
I think every time I read something by Edmund White I start off thinking this is going to be a bit dry, but I'm glad I keep going back. I often find his characters' thoughts to be some of the most soul-baring and resonant I've ever encountered. Jack Holmes' unrequited emotions for his best friend over a period of years might be a kind of suffering that's a lot less likely now that it's much more acceptable to have a same-sex partner, but I think probably most people have experienced the hopelessness of loving or wanting someone inaccessible, and this book explores that territory beautifully.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Explores male bisexuality in a sweeping, multi-decade novel set in New York City.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
I did not find this book interesting or entertaining. I wish I had not bought it.
kenCT More than 1 year ago
I don't understand why you are sending me books I did not order.