Moses Harzog is a middle-aged professor who has at least one scholarly book to his credit but is bogged down in trying to write another one. He has been through two failed marriages and fathered two children. He agonizes over his condition with good reason because mentally he is falling apart.
He writes countless letters, some on paper, some in his mind, most of which he never sends. He has dialogues with dead philosophers telling them the ... Humboldt's Gift
Humboldt's Gift is Saul Bellow's brilliant, fictionalized account of his relationship with poet Delmore Schwartz ("Von Humboldt Fleisher" in the story). Schwartz achieved literary celebrity at a tender age but was ruined by alcoholism and bipolar disorder. The novel describes the increasingly difficult relationship between Bellow ("Charlie Citrine") and the tragic Scwhartz, until the latter's premature death, while living in obscurity.... Ravelstein
Literature professor and narrator Chick talks about the life and obsessions of his good friend Abe Ravelstein, a colleague at the Chicago university where both of them have taught. Chick's marriage to a fascinating, beautiful, but distant physics professor from Eastern Europe is unraveling, while Ravelstein, a closeted gay with a devoted Chinese companion, enjoys the pleasures of money after writing a bestselling book at Chick's urging. Many powerful men... Seize the Day
Tommy is confused in this novel. his changing of his name
cannot change his past or his life.He is still the same because he does nothing in reality.Tommy Wilhelm once wanted to be an actor. He had a pleasing face, and went to California to audition. He was not succesful. He had the wrong angles in front of a camera--he looked like a lumbering bear. Now he pops phenobarbitals, fetching them from his crumbly pocket where they are packed in tinfoil, supp...
The Adventures of Augie March
Saul Bellow writing is very poetic and beautifully scripted – it's not straightforward to read, but then again since Bellow is examining the purposes of our lives, I wouldn't expect the novel and writing style to oversimplify our predicament. Augie is a poor Jewish boy growing up in Chicago – “that somber city” – in a broken home with his dictatorial Grandmother, abandoned mother, and two diametrically opposed brothers (Simon and George.) He finds his...