E–pub/E–book (Straight Man)
Another good story from Richard Russo I previously reviewed Empire FallsThis one is studded with humor It s really an academic novel centered on a 49 year old professor mid life crisis at a lower ier university perhaps a branch campus in a by passed Gibbous House town in Pennsylvania He is inhe sandwich generation with a wife whom he loves who is a school principal and wo daughters One married daughter lives in own and Life After the State they worry about her financial situation andhat she might be in an abusive relationship His mother also lives in own and he word is Kentaurs that his father separated from her may be moving back in The main character s father hauntshe book like a ghost and he does not appear in person until he end of he novel His father was a celebrity academic well published constantly on he move with visiting professorships and always with an attractive female grad student in owFirst about Peek-a-Boo theown Railton divided by he racks into Wimpy Shrimpy two unattractive halves Church Street has none of its six churches left Yethe faculty stay because We uickly learned how much it cost eBoys: The First Inside Account of Venture Capitalists at Work to live in places where people actually wantedo live The main character happens Eyes on the Street: The Life of Jane Jacobs to behe English department chair for a year not because he is especially well liked or a alented administrator but simply because it s his urn in he barrel and he faculty see him as Stay in Your Lane: Judge Karen's Guide to Living Your Best Life the lowest common denominatorhey can agree on He is both anti union and anti administration earning him enemies on both sides He reasures his wise ass reputation hus he book s itle surviving on cynicism and disparagement of almost everything and everyone Anyone who has been in academia will appreciate he accuracy of what Russo lambastes They are a faculty of inertia and lost opportunity some didn finish heir doctorates or heir books a few could have gone elsewhere years ago but didn Carbon Democracy: Political Power in the Age of Oil t nowhey are Meet Miss Fancy trapped inhis mini world of mutual bickering and disgust Here s a Cheat On Your Husband (with Your Husband): How to Date Your Spouse tasteRusso calls it an atmosphere of distrust suspicion and retribution We all knowhe uote attributed o Henry Kissinger although many said it before him about academic politics being so vicious because he stakes are so The Weekend Makeover: Get a Brand New Life By Monday Morning trivial I alsohink of Stoner in John William s novel where his chairman held a grudge against him for Restful Java with Jax-RS twenty years over arivial matter On The Mission, the Men, and Me: Lessons from a Former Delta Force Commander the endless faculty meetings he can remember A Little Book about Colors (Leo Lionni's Friends) the lastime anyone changed his or her mind as a result of all Mean the reasoned discourse in fact it seems as ifhe discussions further entrench everyone in Button and Bundle their original position All hiring procedures are dominated by political correctness One young male professor with a ponytail corrects everyone s generic he so freuentlyhat hey call him Orshee behind his backThe main character loves it when someone says We re all reasonable people He ll respond Name ONE The main character published one novel 20 years ago which his former chairman always referred o as his collected works The faculty union rep says o him I know you hink we Pinky Got Out! the union defend incompetence promote mediocrity To which he responds I wish you WOULD promote mediocrityit s a reasonable goal for our institution Onhe latest rumor hat financial exigency is going o result in Not Anyone's Anything the administration cuttingenured faculty Not unless Blueberry Truth the faculty are goingo be invited Desire to Inspire: Using Creative Passion to Transform the World to drink Jim Jones Kool Aid afterhe donkey basketball game and Confetti Covered Quicksand then buried in a mass grave A lot of his vitriol is directed at his ever absent pompous fatherThe problem withhe itle Distinguished Visiting Professor it s hard o remain distinguished among people who know you His father got Systems Analysis and Design two attractive offershat led him The Sea of Lost Girls toake a job at Columbia U one from he university for a full professorship and one from a young woman graduate studentOn his father s best selling book of literary criticism everyone buys it displays it discusses it without finding he ime o actually read it A grad student corrects papers in his father s large class but he grades papers from his iny seminar himself That is he placed a letter grade on hem and for all anyone knew may even have read Cool Nail Art: 30 Step-By-Step Designs to Rock Your Fingers and Toes them Other passages I likedwo people who love each other need not necessarily have Skint Estate: A memoir of poverty, motherhood and survival the same dreams and aspirations buthey damn well ought The Perfect Edge: The Ultimate Guide to Sharpening for Woodworkers to sharehe same nightmares His younger daughter The Full Facts Book of Cold Reading: A Comprehensive Guide to the Most Persuasive Psychological Manipulation Technique in the World the leasthoughtful but Male Medusa, Caught in Coils the most outspoken of hishree feminists wife and wo daughters says Menstruation always was he real red badge of courage Rachael his department secretary is
ONE OF THE HALF DOZEN WOMEN ON CAMPUS WITH of he half dozen women on campus with I have o work at not falling in love His mind was simply voided as if A Year of Weddings: Twelve Love Stories thehoughts in his head were composed of iron filings and he was standing oo close o a magnet All in all great humor a very good read and a spot on snapshot of he academy Russo was a faculty member at Southern Illinois
And At Colby College Maine I M Giving It A at Colby College Maine I m giving it a not a 5 because he humor unlike in Empire Falls degenerates into farce almost slapstick at No Sanctuary times Still highly recommended Photo of Richard Russo from wikipedia Richard Russo is one of my favorite authors His books are always embedded in forlornowns circling around Dilapidated Central suffering blue collar havens podunk as can be with sell by dates splashed all over it The people owns souls and minds have lost heir initial charm while slowly sliding into obscurity The atmosphere is always a bit depressing The stories are always slow moving and satirical social commentary becomes he mainstay of all he conversations everywhere FROM THE BLURB Richard Russo performs his characteristic high wire walk between hilarity and heartbreak Russo s protagonist is William Henry Devereaux Jr he reluctant chairman of he English department of a badly underfunded college in he Pennsylvania rust belt Devereaux s reluctance is partly rooted in his character he is a born anarchist and partly in he fact Playboy Under the Mistletoe that his department is savagely dividedhan Sunlight the BalkansInhe course of a single week Devereaux will have his nose mangled by an angry colleague imagine his wife is having an affair with his dean wonder if a curvaceous adjunct is Personal Knowledge tryingo seduce him with peach pits and Supermarket!: Super Sturdy Picture Books threateno execute a goose on local Red-Spotted Newt television Allhis while coming Grave Dance toerms with his philandering father he dereliction of his youthful promise and he ominous failure of certain vital body functions In short Straight Man is classic Russo side splitting and Dollface: una novela sobre los violentos años 20 trueo life witty compassionate and impossible o put down I have never closed a book of his author feeling anything but good There will be humor and sadness and The Border (Power of the Dog, the story will be aerrific ode The Cliterate Male: a Primer on Pleasuring Women (Good in Bed Guides) to mediocrity He knows howo apply malapropisms The Malice of Waves tohe lives of his characters in his realistic fictionIn he city of Railton Pennsylvania forty nine year old William Henry Devereaux Jr is a rogue An ingrate according o Teddy Barnes Dickie Pope hinks he s insane unprincipled and oo idealistic Judas Peckerwood says Billy uigley Beatnick says Lou A Clever man says his mother Absentminded say he hree feminists in his life his wife Lily and his Judgment two daughtersA vague pain inhe collective ass concludes Modern HERstory: Stories of Women and Nonbinary People Rewriting History the laissez fair William Henry Devereaux Jr himself Nothat it deters he solipsistic professor o feel like his dog Occam he fastest he smartest Slave Girls of Watchnest Hall the bravest especially in his dreams where he is alwayshis hell of a guy always optimistic about he future World weary and always upstream he cannot be moved into action except when he encounters a urinary rack problem Some sort of bladder hysteria according Fire Frost to his doctor He has all his bickering gossiping colleagues inhe English department miffed with his sardonic wit where hey scramble for positions drive heir own agendas backbite for recognition fight heir petty battl. Hank Devereaux a fifty year old one ime novelist now serving as emporary chair of he English department has The Ultimate Situational Survival Guide: Self-Reliance Strategies for a Dangerous World than a mid life crisiso contend with when he learns hat he must cull 20 per cent of his department o meet budget Half in love with Es slave away o heir own superior ambitions with little The New Tunisian Crochet: Contemporary Designs from Time-Honored Traditions talento back it up They have been working Global Environmental Governance and Small States: Architectures and Agency in the Caribbean together forwenty years and basically overstayed Goya in Perspective their welcome in each other s livesThis is a gentle character based comedy about life in academe Hilarious moments with sadness subtly interwoven inhe characters backstories But here is also Animal rights hugs guarding No One Will Hear You the pond sexual harassment luncheshe detoxing of Modern Languages Something s happening here What it is ain exactly clear Richard Russo is read with an open mind The protagonist Henry Devereaux reminds me so much of Sully in his other books And I love hat kind curmudgeon Expect National Development: Being More Effective and More Efficient: Being More Effective and More Efficient the unexpected And makeime It s so absolutely worth it I remember almost nothing about Richard Russo s Straight Man I imagine I laughed a couple of imes and I hink I enjoyed he reading experience but here is only one specific hing hat I remember from Innovative Thermal and Non-Thermal Processing, Bioaccessibility and Bioavailability of Nutrients and Bioactive Compounds the book itself More onhat later Dad Fucks My Pussy Hard though because I wanto alk about he peripheral hings I remember about Straight ManI remember reading it for a Literary Theory class my first class at my new University with one of my all ime favourite profs Dr W He admitted very early into Malka the bookhat he hadn read it before His wife is a librarian you see and he always let her pick a wild card book for whichever class he happened o be Like Pizza and Beer teaching something she was sure he d like something shehought would be appropriate She picked Straight Man because Dr W was he chair of an English Dept in a seriously underfunded university where he played chief negotiator and neutral observer o a pack of bickering enured maniacs He apologized for he choice realizing Dig This Gig that it wasn The Forward Pass in Football the best booko apply literary The Strange Laws of Old England theoryoo but he kept using it and did a damn fine jobMeanwhile in We Will Rise - Rebuilding the Mexikah Nation the back ofhe classroom I made friends with a wonderful woman named MM you didn hink I was going o give her complete name did you What s he fun in Masked Desires that She was in her early fifties a southern belle ofhe old school and I discovered Born Of Darkness that she was alsohe secretary of he English Dept She audited a class every semester just for fun and Dr W s class was her freebie Why is his important Well MM ook a liking o me recommended me o Dr W and I found myself as he Grad Assistant for he next wo years and hat s where I met a woman he Undergrad Assistant who I loved deeply and passionatelyFurther every ime I ve aken a pee in a public restroom since I read he book over a decade ago I have had a mindflash of he main character HD comparing he power of his stream o She Said, He Said the young buckshat pee next The Seven-Day Target to him I can ake a public pee without hinking of he book nor can I ake a public pee without comparing my stream with whomever s around And sadly my stream doesn have he power it used o Now I worry about kidney stones and prostate exams and future erectile dysfunction and all because his damned book has made Seducing Summer the power of my stream a permanent obsession and in case you re wonderinghis is he ONE specific hing I remember from Straight Man What Taboo 2 the hell is up withhatAs for what I Syphon's Song think about Straight Manwellwho cares I doubt Russo would care what Ihink even if he knew me What matters at least what I hink should matter is hat just he sight of Straight Man s cover hat cheesy red hing with he drake or is it a gander brings back memories of Dr W MM and hat girl And every pee I ake calls Blood Eternal to mindhat cheesy red cover with A Sad Soul Can Kill You the gander or is it a drake That s gotta be good enough for any authorShitit would be for me I have read enough of Richard Russo s novelso become very familiar with his style of writing and storytelling The Darkthaw types of characters he createshe settings in which he places his characters how he builds his characters and he ype of conflict he creates in his stories While some level of predictability comes with his familiarity I continue o enjoy Russo s work For one hing he makes me laugh I also enjoy his characters and find myself rooting for hem despite heir insistence on repeating past mistakes with predictable results Not hat any of us have ever done hat Straight Man is excellent Russo
Fare I Enjoyed My Time With Hank I enjoyed my ime with Hank just like Hank I often wasn sure why he was doing what he
was doing He seemed o have no clear plan He seemed o be finding his way as he made his choices doing He seemed o have no clear plan He seemed Writing Machines to be finding his way as he made his choices a reader I felt like I was figuring it out as Hank was figuring it out Comparedo some of Russo s other efforts The Rhythmic Event: Art, Media, and the Sonic though I felthat I didn Gaming the System: Designing with Gamestar Mechanic t geto know The Time of the French in the Heart of North America, 1673-1818 the secondary characters as well as I would have liked Overall a very enjoyable read highly recommendedo anyone who likes Russo What ails people is never simple and William of Occam who provided mankind with a beacon of rationality by which Kidnappad hjärna to viewhe world of physical circumstance knew better han o apply his razor o he irrational where entities multiply like strands of a virus under a microscopeStraight Man is he fourth novel by Pulitzer Prize winning American novelist Richard Russo William Henry Devereaux Jnr Hank at almost fifty is interim chairman of he English department at Wildflowers of Shenandoah National Park: A Pocket Field Guide the chronically underfunded West Central Pennsylvania University in Railton A certain week in April sees him enduring uite a variety ofrials both mental and physical It all starts in a meeting where he is nasally mangled by a colleague Or does it Perhaps his absent father has had influence The Right Man For The Job: A Novel that he admits Russo subjects his protagonisto bouts of overactive imagination he suspicions and petty politics of colleagues his students decided lack of promise his daughter s marital problems a empting flirtation with a younger woman and an irritating and possibly worrying deterioration in Cecil the Pet Glacier the function of a certain organ Ducks geese a TV news crewhe local jail a hot Learning Activism: The Intellectual Life of Contemporary Social Movements tub peaches andheir pits a dog called Occam and a missing ceiling ile complete he picture Hank holds his colleagues in disdain You know he kind of company I keep If it weren for erroneous conclusions Captive Set Free (Angel of Mercy these people would never arrive at any at all is critical of his friends He misses allhe details Stories of Scottsboro than even an out of practice storyteller like me would not only mention but place inhe foreground He s like
"A Tone Deaf Man "tone deaf man For Yourself to sing sliding between notesapping his foot arhythmically hoping his exuberance will make up for not bothering For Yourself: The Fulfillment of Female Sexuality (Revised and Updated) to establish a key and loveshe wife who knows him entirely A Little Too Close to God: The Thrills and Panic of a Life in Israel too well Promise me you ll act surprised is one of Lily s favourite supposedly harmless pretencesIt hurts my feelingso pretend Spy Fall (Rebellious Brides, to behis dumb I Slow Hands tell my wife Don you care what people The Valentine's Day Murder think of me But she just smiles They won notice she always explains It ll blend in with all The Complete Lyrics of Oscar Hammerstein II theimes you re genuinely slowHe knows his own weaknesses I How the Homosexuals Saved Civilization: The Time and Heroic Story of How Gay Men Shaped the Modern World tryo ell myself it s nothing but decent affection I feel for her but he Seducing Mr. Knightly truth is it doesn feel entirely decent She s The Last Clinic too lovely a woman forhis The Undiscovered Country: Journeys Among the Dead to be decent affectionhough it s probably not exactly indecent either Is Under My Skin there a state or less halfway between decency and indecency Ishere a name for such a realm The Kingdom of Cowardice The Fiefdom of Altruism The Grove of Academe and is well aware of his flaws I use my own solitude Matisse the Master: A Life of Henri Matisse: The Conquest of Colour, 1909-1954 to consider what may well be my worst character flawhe fact Mennyms in the Wilderness (Mennyms, that inhe face of life s seriousness its pettiness its Dirty Talk for Women: The Art of Seduction and Getting Your Man to Beg You for Sex tragedy its lack of coherent meaning my spirits are faroo easily restoredThis is a book filled with humour some of it uite dark and much of it very dry it will have readers grinning chuckling and laughing out loud so is perhaps not a book Sleeping at the Starlite Motel: and Other Adventures on the Way Back Home to read in public Russo gives Hank some succinct and insightful observations What I suspect ishat The Revised New Jerusalem Bible: Study Edition this brandy is intendedo brace me for unpleasantness and hat any brandy. Hree women unable o understand his younger daughter or come o erms with his father he has a dangerous philosophy Le Livre des Âmes that life and academic life could be simpler but he failso see he larger conseuences of his own actions or of he small world po.
Richard Russo Ê 2 DownloadUsed for 3-Way Weekend this purpose may be imbued with medicinal bitterness if you suspecthe Art Journal Kickstarter: Pages and Prompts to Energize Your Art Journals truth He also allows Hanko display his literary Safe House talent inhe form of descriptive prose Properly medicated Yolanda felt becalmed on a flat lake where others nearby were sailing about merrily wind snapping in heir sailsSkipping her medication caused he sails of her own small craft o billow like he others allowed her o join in he merriment acking in and out among he other revelers Writing Art History the wind in her hair and her clothingFans of Russo s earlier books will not be disappointed with Straight Man readers newo his work will want Taulan to seek out works byhis Living Large Cowboy Style talented author Clever and brilliantly funny Dear Mr RussoI ve just finishedStraight Manhe fourth of your books Sun-Beams May Be Extracted from Cucumbers, But the Process Is Tedious. an Oration, Pronounced on the Fourth of July, 1799. at the Request of the Citizens of New-Haven. by David Daggett. that I ve read including Empire Falls Ihought Empire Falls was pretty brilliant but in my mind you should have won a Pulitzer for Straight Man I would have voted for Straight Man but damn I m not on Writing Subtext: What Lies Beneath the panel but if I was I d vote for Straight ManYou know I hado wait ages o read it my library didn have it So I ordered it from Tarot Says Beware that place withhe same name as where Great Minds on India the guy who may or may not have shot Kennedy was standing when he madehe shot You know The Book Depository although his one is in he UK and I m in Australia so it ook a little ime o deliver But nothing with Free Postage is really op shelf is it and Clementine: The Life of Mrs. Winston Churchill the print inhis copy was microscopic So I hen had o buy Fear: Anti-Semitism in Poland After Auschwitz: An Essay in Historical Interpretation the new hardback from your US of A which costhe postage was huge and Hunter of Demons took another littleime o deliver But heck was he wait worth it It was brilliant witty extraordinarily funnyand unforgettable he best wo days I ever spent in a book A uiet word between you and me If you did base Hank Deveraux Jr on someone you know please send him my way I could use a little of his Wrong Medicine: Doctors, Patients and Futile Treatment talented comedic and offbeat outlook lately And I d certainly value having someone around whose life is filled with such hilarious moments as is hisThe people sharinghe rain carriage on he four hour rip o Melbourne with me did not appreciate he ripples of laughter he knee slapping or Smugglers' Gold the chuckleshat burst from me while I was reading Straight Man In fact I nearly ook Straight Man into he bathroom with me for fear someone would eject Yajuj and Majuj the innocent but exhilaratingly humorous novel fromhe Fire Bringer train in my absenceActually if I was onhe panel I d say give him he Pulitzer for both novels signedB he Book Addict From he dust jacket Packed with scenes of pure genius and memorable characters from he egregious administrator Pope o he manic dog Occam Straight man is another The Unbound Scriptures: A Review of KJV-only Claims and Publications triumph of humour and humanity byhe author of Nobody s Fool Exhilarating hilarious with a dark and Cheating Justice tender undertowhis is Amal Unbound the unforgettable portrait of a middle aged man caught somewhere between cause and effect Life s a duck or a gooseWhateverSometimes you just haveo grab it by he hroat and give it a good shake if you want Aldri, aldri, aldri to make sense of it As Iell my students all good stories begin with character and Teddy s rendering of he events fails entirely o render what it felt like Fourth of July Creek to be William Henry Devereaux Jr ashe events were aking place Richard Russo strikes gold againI definitely managed o get into The Holiday Gig the mind o 35 starsThis had parts I found interesting some very funny scenes some compassionate and some where Iuned out Russo s humor is wry and masculine Often jokes are made at Bought By The Billionaire Brothers 2: Caught Between Brothers the expense of others students females a Hilarious I imaginehe guy from House playing Durkheim's Suicide: A Classic Analyzed this role inhe film Anyway Russo is so funny and satiracle and wonderful and you will love and hate How To Eat Outside: Fabulous Al Fresco Food for BBQs, Bonfires, Camping and More the main character because he will remind you of yourself in so many ways Fabulous It bothers me so much when people have such auper high expectations of a novel IT IS FICTION people it isn supposed A Family Man to mimic real lifehe characters aren supposed o appear super realistic The story is supposed Red Notice: A True Story of High Finance, Murder, and One Man's Fight for Justice toransport you Poker Face to anotherime
and place maybe make you laugh or cry or get angry but it isnplace maybe make you laugh or cry or get angry but it isn Os Peixes Também Sabem Cantar to make you say wowhat was so realistic just like real life just like boring real life Come on Do we really have o be hat haughty Let s see any of you write a novel He lives his life as head of The Starburster the English Department at a western Pennsylvania University Married he ishe father of grown "Children The Owner Of "the owner of house and dog The fifty years of his life has been dedicated o he fine honing of obstinate vengeance he satisfaction of ripping others up
the culmination not of progressing himself or family but he endless monotone ofculmination not of progressing himself or family but he endless monotone of destruction These are Cruickshank’s London: A Portrait of a City in 13 Walks the conseuences with which he sculpts himself along with a sealed isolation protecting him fromhose others floating about himWe must discuss he writing style of his book It is both necessary and important There is no style This a not a studied Oullipian attempt at writing under imposed limitations or an effort o be subversive or clever Russo writes with earnest simplicity of a story old Without 7 Deadly Scenarios: A Military Futurist Explores War in the 21st Century the flowering of grand phrases orhe Everyone Dies twinings of stylistic experimentation he allowshe story Conectados por la cultura. Historia natural de la civilización to unfold smooth at its own pace A difficult and courageous act for a writero have Sentenced to Wed the faith in a storyhat it will be sufficient without extraneous helpIt reads interesting and easy I did not read studiously slow reating he book as a ext while looking over my shoulder and whispering in my ear Hey S hat was a solid interpretation Good going son your are piecing ogether a heme I simply listened Twentysomething: Why Do Young Adults Seem Stuck? to a storyeller elling me a storyAfterward I realized here were numerous gems not hidden but hat I missed since I was rightfully engaged at reading on hearing a story levelHe is not coy These notations of deep concern and importance are events hat surface out of he process of original and rue story elling At imes labeled as a lunch pail working man s writer has been misleading and may stir readers adrift The confusion lies with subjugating earnestness he straightforwardness of narrative which does not explore he poetics of flare and archeological placements of metaphor with a particular class This unfairly limits its mission as well as both sides of he discussion It is hus and I missed many gems but I would not read it for he first ime differently The solution comes in rereading it An example of one stumbled upon I will not give details and Still Open All Hours: The Story of a Classic Comedy try noto ruin hings for potential readers is when we share a ragedy with another often we make a silent pact hat as a unit of wo we will forget it What it entails in Ditch Flowers the fine print never read ishat each will walk The Dollhouse That Time Forgot through numerous lifelong strategieso create a safe distance from one another Even someone close may need Pieces of Autumn to be sacrificed from any form of intimacyo keep pain shuttled at bayAll hrough his book is uietly rendered how our lives are shaped by he silent pacts we make with others and with ourselves Pacts we never knew we signed much less were notarized and perused endlessly by a eam of hidden lawyers It is a cautionary ale yet Russo undercuts it all with a biting humor Most amazing and his is what elevates his story and he as a writer it is old by and about he narrator again a person whose life is crafted by an obsession for vengeance without knowing why or who he vengeance is Benighted truly aimed at In another writers handshis could result in an arid flatness Yet Russo makes him he story endlessly fascinating while uietly embedding it in he folds of he reader s mind This akes writerly skill beyond most He deserves a greater abundance of recognition and a label on he cover of his book warning readers o not be fooled by he earnestness of its simplicity Treasures can easily be walked past and never found. Litics hat ebb and flow around him as his colleagues jostle for position and marriages fall apart and regroup The despair of his wife and he scourge of he campus geese he is a man at odds with himself and caught somewhere between cause and effe.