The Macguffin (Contemporary American Fiction)

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9780140172348: The Macguffin (Contemporary American Fiction)
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Of Stanley Elkin, The New York Times Book Review has said "no serious writer in this country can match him." In this 1991 National Book Award Finalist, Elkin combineshcockian plot as he narrates the mysterious events that take place in 40 hours in the life of Bobbo Druff.

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About 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.

Review:

"By now it shouldn't be necessary to insist on the importance of [Elkin's] work: a list of the American novelists who have mattered over the last three decades would be a pitifully short one if it left him off. . . . He is a sublimely funny writer, an inspired stand-up performer. . . . Druff is gifted, like other Elkin protagonists, with almost miraculous verbal energies. . . . Elkin's whole representation of the American here and now is what deserves most praise. . . . Elkin clearly has just about all of us in mind, and the loving generosity of his wonder of things as they are, and as they might become, is as essentially American as anything in Emerson or Whitman. We owe him thanks again." -- Thomas R. Edwards, The New Republic, 5/20/91

"I find I've underlined The MacGuffin like a schoolkid, relishing the astonishments. How does Stanley Elkin make magic, book after book? Well, sentence after sentence, word after word, is how. By an unappeasable curiosity about the country's and the heart's works is how. He performs his singular alchemy on cliches of idiom and the spirit, translating what was shopworn into what becomes, by his magic, renewed, freshly true. He is an irreplaceable treasure, as anyone knows who has read him." -- Geoffrey Wolfe

"In The MacGuffin, that mad Joycean poetry is still there. . . . The sentences are long riffs of jazz; the words swarm and lather; the prose is exuberantly betroped, exhilaratingly de trop. . . . Elkin is brilliant." -- Lorrie Moore, New York Times, 3/10/91

"Stanley Elkin is no ordinary genius of language, laughter, and the irresistible American idiom: he is an ingenious genius--an inimitable sword-swallower, fire-eater, and three-ring circus of fecund wit and inexhaustible comic artistry. A bountiful novel about the mind of a most uncommon City Commissioner of Streets, The MacGuffin flies through the air with the greatest ease while keeping a quizzical eye open for every spiritual pothole, psychological traffic snarl, and stuck cultural stoplight." -- Cynthia Ozick

Elkin is one of the grand originals of American fiction--as death haunted as Samuel Beckett, as funny as S. J. Perelman. . . . Elkin simply cannot bear to produce a lifeless sentence . . . The MacGuffin is wonderfully funny. . . . Most readers will want to say, again and again, "Mr. Elkin, sir, you are one hell of a writer,'" -- Michael Dirda, Washington Post Book World, 3/10/91

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Other Popular Editions of the Same Title

9781564782236: Macguffin (American Literature (Dalkey Archive))

Featured Edition

ISBN 10:  1564782239 ISBN 13:  9781564782236
Publisher: Dalkey Archive Press, 1999
Softcover

9780671673246: The Macguffin

Simon ..., 1991
Hardcover

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