A Sport and a Pastime (Modern Library)

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9780679601562: A Sport and a Pastime (Modern Library)

"A Sport and a Pastime is as nearly perfect as any American fiction
I know," Reynolds Price wrote of James Salter's 1967 novel that tells of the mismatched love affair between Phillip Dean, a Yale dropout adrift in Europe, and Anne-Marie Costallat, a young French shopgirl. An erotic tour de force, licentious yet pure, it is also a hymn to provincial France and has been admired and quoted from since its first publication. Its stunning knowledge and insight have the power to change lives.
        It brings a kind of splendor to the life that refuses to bow to conven-
tion or mores, and, like Cavafy's poems, evokes the illicit in a way that endows it with an astonishing beauty. Brilliantly written and overwhelming in its effect, it remains a triumph on every level.

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About the Author:

James Salter is the author of numerous books, including the novels Solo Faces, Light Years, A Sport and a Pastime, The Arm of Flesh (revised as Cassada), The Hunters and All That Is; the memoirs Gods of Tin and Burning the Days; the collections Dusk and Other Stories, which won the 1989 PEN/Faulkner Award, and Last Night, which won the Rea Award for the Short Story and the PEN/Malamud Award; and Life Is Meals: A Food Lover's Book of Days, written with Kay Salter. He lives in New York and Colorado.

Review:

A great literary novel but also the most erotic book ever written -- Jonathan Dee Financial Times 'A Sport and a Pastime ... Slender, cynical and bruisingly sexy, the novel represents the first full flowering of [Salter's] mature style; his exquisite sentences and extraordinary evocation of place. Daily Telegraph 'Now deemed canonical ... A Sport and a Pastime [is] still one of the most intensely honest books about sexual passion.' Sunday Times A tour de force of erotic realism, a romantic cliffhanger New York Times He has written three books that everyone should read before they die: A Sport and a Pastime, Light Years, and his recollections, Burning the Days Independent 'Two of his previous novels [including] A Sport and a Pastime, from 1967, are regarded as classics ... The writer Reynolds Price also thought A Sport and a Pastime "perfect",' Irish Times One of the finest American writers of his mighty generation Esquire He has written three books that everyone should read before they die: A Sport and a Pastime, Light Years and his recollections, Burning the Days Independent Salter is the contemporary writer most admired and envied by other writers ... He can, when he wants, break your heart with a sentence Washington Post A Sport and a Pastime is as nearly perfect as any American fiction I know -- Reynolds Price James Salter's writing has always provoked in me a kind of evangelical admiration. It is sheer brute magic. His prose is exquisite, sentences created with such acuity and efficacy it seems he re-forges language itself, makes it more purposeful and beautiful -- Sarah Hall Robert Frost said that the hope of any poet is to lodge a few poems so deep they couldn't be dislodged, and James Salter has done that again and again. He has become an indelible presence in our literature -- Tobias Wolff Observer To read Salter's work is always to embark on a journey through a life lived - the beautiful and the colourless, the tragic and the sustaining ... exceptional fiction that cuts to our most cherished and at times most private truths. Read him when you can, his novels about sex and flying and war and love - those moments that should outshine all others - and your own world, your own moments worth remembering will appear all the brighter for it GQ

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Salter, James
Published by Modern Library (1995)
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