“What Henry James did for the geographically disoriented, Bellow does for the culturally traumatized in the six stories gathered in this collection. Truly, Bellow is one of God’s spies.” –Los Angeles Times
A Penguin Classic
In six darkly comic tales, Saul Bellow presents the human experience in all its preposterousness, poignancy, and pathos. In the title story, a professor well-known for his wit struggles to animate his memoirs as he teeters on the brink of despair; in “the old System,” a distinguished biochemist tries to find room in his life for love; and in “A Father to Be,” a man is startled to find himself seated next to his future adult son on a New York subway. The other stories, too, reflect Bellow’s special ability to depict men and women confronting, in highly idiosyncratic ways, the enigmas and oddities of existence.
For more than seventy years, Penguin has been the leading publisher of classic literature in the English-speaking world. With more than 1,700 titles, Penguin Classics represents a global bookshelf of the best works throughout history and across genres and disciplines. Readers trust the series to provide authoritative texts enhanced by introductions and notes by distinguished scholars and contemporary authors, as well as up-to-date translations by award-winning translators.
Saul Bellow was born of Russian Jewish parents in Lachine, Quebec, in 1915, and was raised in Chicago. He received his bachelor’s degree from Northwestern University in 1937. His novel The Adventures of Augie March won the National Book Award for fiction… More about Saul Bellow