Sunday, May 25, 2014

Paperback 778: The Old Man / William Faulkner (Signet 692)

Paperback 778: Signet 692 (1st ptg, 1948)

Title: The Old Man
Author: William Faulkner
Cover artist: jonas

Yours for: $9


Best things about this cover:
  • I like how they're both posing and flexing but there's no audience. "Don't I look like the Lancôme girl…?" "I went to GNC and then the gym so …" The ocean gave no reply.
  • I was certain this was "The Old Man and the Sea." This book proves that Faulkner was (exactly) half the writer Hemingway was.
  • I'm not feeling either violence or terror. I'm feeling people working on their tans.


Best things about this back cover:
  • "Psst, I'm down here. Bottom left corner. Fuckers nearly cropped me out of my own author photo."
  • "Desultorily" is a great word. Pretty sure I just read it in John Barth's The Sot-Weed Factor, also in relation to a character's university education. 
  • Faulkner's "stint in Hollywood" famously included co-writing the screenplay for "The Big Sleep" (with Leigh Brackett and that other guy whose name I always forget). 

Page 123~

When he saw the River again, he knew it at once.

Sorry. It was that, or a sentence that's about 90 miles long. No thanks.


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DemetriosX said...

Why are those people snubbing each other and absolutely everything else. Seriously, they both look like they're throwing snits.

I don't think I'd say that Faulkner is half the writer Hemingway was. They were both pretty damn good. Sure Faulkner used fifty dollar words and his sentences went on forever (there's one in Absalom, Absalom that goes on for three pages!), but Hemingway could be just as excessive in the other direction, not to mention his refusal to use contractions and an overuse of the word "said".

Larry said...


I think the "half the writer"is working off this:

Faulkner: The Old Man (3 words, 1 subject)

Hemingway: The Old Man and the Sea (6 words, 2 subjects).

I'd sure rather be assigned in class Hemingway instead of Faulkner. On the other hand, Hemingway was always shooting his mouth off.