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Autobiography of Red Book Review Summary

Detailed Plot Synopsis of Autobiography of Red

"AUTOBIOGRAPHY OF RED", a novel in verse, based on a Hercules myth, in which the epic hero destroys a red-winged "monster" and his little red dog tending red cattle on a Greek volcanic island,becomes the story of a boy, Geryon,growing up in today'w world, with an adolescent crush on an older boy, Herakles.
      Later, as an adult,Geryon meets Herakles again, and although drawn to him erotically, eventually finds him repugnant.   
    Moving from various locales, including Buenos Aires and Peru, the novel meditates on the interwoven themes of identity, memory,and eternity.
      Geryon's wings, a metaphor for freedom from constraints of time, are hidden as he pursues his adult voacation of photography in which fleeting moments are frozen into eternity.
    But the final flight of Geryon into the volcano is a "photograph he never took", entitiled,"The Only Secret People Keep".

The magical way Anne Carson uses words, including the manner in which she infuses the color red throughout the novel in verse, makes this the most spell-binding work in English, since perhaps, T.s. Eliot's poem, "The Wasteland".
This report prepared by Betty-Jeanne Korson








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Chapter Analysis of Autobiography of Red

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Plot & Themes

Tone of book?    -   very sensitive (sigh) Time/era of story    -   1980's-1999 Romance/Romance Problems    -   Yes Kind of romance:    -   seduction (yum!) Kids growing up/acting up?    -   Yes Life of a profession:    -   artist Kind of sex:    -   incest    -   rape Is this an adult or child's book?    -   Adult or Young Adult Book Job/Profession/Status story    -   Yes Taboo sex story?    -   Yes

Main Character

Gender    -   Male Profession/status:    -   unemployed Has magical powers?    -   Yes Magical/mental powers of main character:    -   can fly Unusual characteristics:    -   Super sensitive soggy jelly muffin

Setting

How much descriptions of surroundings?    -   8 () Europe    -   Yes European country:    -   Greece The Americas (not US):    -   Yes The Americas:    -   South Mountains/Cliffs    -   Yes Air?    -   Yes Air:    -   passenger plane Island?    -   Yes Island:    -   food/shelter preoccupation    -   stranded    -   Atlantic Ocean Island Farm/Ranch?    -   Yes Farm/Ranch:    -   farm Small town?    -   Yes

Writing Style

Sex in book?    -   Yes What kind of sex:    -   touching of anatomy    -   Weiner talk!    -   two guys doing it Amount of dialog    -   significantly more dialog than descript

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Anne Carson Books Note: the views expressed here are only those of the reviewer(s).
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