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Murphy's Romance

Schott, Max

21 ratings by Goodreads
ISBN 10: 0060137819 / ISBN 13: 9780060137816
Published by Harper & Row, New York, 1980
Hardcover
From Warwick Books, member IOBA (South Pasadena, CA, U.S.A.)

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About this Item

Hardcover with dustjacket. 12mo. First edition. Book is in near fine condition; bottom edges are lightly rubbed. Jacket is in VG condition; 3" tear to front jacket flap has been repaired with scotch tape, and edges are rubbed. Review slip laid in. 129 pp. Bookseller Inventory # 10815

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Bibliographic Details

Title: Murphy's Romance

Publisher: Harper & Row, New York

Publication Date: 1980

Binding: Hardcover

Dust Jacket Condition: Dust Jacket Included

Edition: 1st Edition

About this title

Synopsis:

KIRKUS REVIEW Two short stories, previously published in Schott's recent collection, Up Where I Used to Live, sit like hearths in the midst of this novel; but Schott, like his Western contemporary characters, is sly and laconic enough to have built a cozy, just-the-right-size house around them that can be properly heated and lit--low flames and shadows being the essence of his art. Murphy Jones, a widower in his fifties from the deserted southeast part of Oregon, moves to the California desert and buys a stock auctionyard. He thus comes in close proximity to Toni Wilson--a lady horse trainer, 40, attractive, independent, and interested in Murphy solely as a friend; she's had plenty of husbands and lovers. So Murphy marries her aunt, Margaret, and is happy and concerned and playful with Toni thereafter; but he's still pretty regularly in the middle of her personal life, where it makes him sick to be. (But he's even sicker when he stays away.) He and Margaret help Toni to deflect one old suitor, Wendell, only to urge her to reconcile with another, Ben (whom she marries--and Murphy wishes he weren't quite so helpful). Everything is very simple on the surface, as Schott's style moseys along, clipped and relaxed and coin-true in dialogue. At the end of the book, though, you realize you've had a massive dose of subtle, touching, nearly Chekhovian psychology--and the effect is exalting. Because the aim is set so knee-level, affectationless, it takes a moment to see that Murphy's unrequited love is monstrous--and that Toni's known it all along. The little cautionary, awshucks stories that Murphy tells Toni's suitors exactly match the power of Schott's while-no-one's-looking talent for parable, the economy of poetry wearing the plain hat of gossip. Just a chip, then, this little book--but of gold all the way through. Pub Date: Feb. 6th, 1979 Publisher: Harper & Row

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Warwick Books, is an Internet-only bookseller that specializes in hard-to-find books for avid readers and collectors. Many of our books are out of print. Specialties include literature, signed firsts, art and photography, design, illustrated books, cookbooks, field guides, children's books, needlecraft books, and Americana. We recently acquired a large private collection of books on military history. The focus is on World War II as well as aviation history. Warwick Books is a member of IOBA, the Independent Online Booksellers Association.

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