Licks of Love: Short Stories and a Sequel, "Rabbit Remembered"

Licks of Love Short Stories and a Sequel Rabbit Remembered In this brilliant late career collection John Updike revisits many of the locales of his early fiction the small town Pennsylvania of Olinger Stories the sandstone farmhouse of Of the Farm the exur

In this brilliant late career collection, John Updike revisits many of the locales of his early fiction the small town Pennsylvania of Olinger Stories, the sandstone farmhouse of Of the Farm, the exurban New England of Couples and Marry Me, and Henry Bech s Manhattan of artistic ambition and taunting glamour To a dozen short stories spanning the American Century, the autIn this brilliant late career collection, John Updike revisits many of the locales of his early fiction the small town Pennsylvania of Olinger Stories, the sandstone farmhouse of Of the Farm, the exurban New England of Couples and Marry Me, and Henry Bech s Manhattan of artistic ambition and taunting glamour To a dozen short stories spanning the American Century, the author has added a novella length coda to his quartet of novels about Harry Rabbit Angstrom Several strands of the Rabbit saga come together here as, during the fall and winter holidays of 1999, Harry s survivors fitfully entertain his memory while pursuing their own happiness up to the edge of a new millennium Love makes Updike s fictional world go round married love, filial love, feathery licks of erotic love, and love for the domestic particulars of Middle American life.

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    344 John Updike

  1. John Hoyer Updike was an American writer Updike s most famous work is his Rabbit series Rabbit, Run Rabbit Redux Rabbit Is Rich Rabbit At Rest and Rabbit Remembered Rabbit is Rich and Rabbit at Rest both won Pulitzer Prizes for Updike Describing his subject as the American small town, Protestant middle class, Updike is well known for his careful craftsmanship and prolific writing, having published 22 novels and than a dozen short story collections as well as poetry, literary criticism and children s books Hundreds of his stories, reviews, and poems have appeared in The New Yorker since the 1950s His works often explore sex, faith, and death, and their inter relationships.He died of lung cancer at age 76.

203 Reply to “Licks of Love: Short Stories and a Sequel, "Rabbit Remembered"”

  1. no other book i ve read proves those famous lines terrible or true than the Rabbit series Life s but a walking shadow, a poor player That struts and frets his hour upon the stage And then is heard no it is a taleTold by an idiot, full of sound and fury, Signifying want to scream at these people to be nicer and have some perspective and see the big picture that all the arguments and minor tragedies and betrayals and quibbles and pettiness are NOTHING if you take a few steps back an [...]

  2. People talk about the Rabbit tetralogy and they rarely acknowledge the fifth coda of a novella, included in this collection It s called Rabbit, Remembered, and it isn t This is because it s totally unnecessary It s not bad, it s just irrelevant.It picks up about a decade after Rabbit s death, and here come some spoilers for this and previous Rabbit books view spoiler Janice has married Ronnie Harrison, Rabbit s old frenemy and the widow of his end of life affair, Thelma, she of the golden shower [...]

  3. Having never read the Rabbit series, I only have this one novella to go on, but the entire collection was wonderful In the spirit of Irving, there s an East Coast vibe, even when the stories deviate or rely on other aspects to full them along In the end there s always the smell of fall leaves and changing seasons Wet boots on hardwood and dirty blankets to catch the slush You can t extract the East from Updike s stories In a world of new books, I can say there s something about a handful of auth [...]

  4. I ve already read half of it via the novelette at the end Rabbit Remembered now I ll read the stories that preceded it The Women Who Got Away A subject many men are fond of Heh heh This one s a bit of a bore as it focuses on middle class infidelity, a boring topic to me Updike is semi obsessed with sex and women The ending s a hoot, though JU did a number of looking back re visiting stories as he got older Lunch Hour I read a similar story in the NY er Maybe this one but I don t think so Same ge [...]

  5. After finishing the last novel in Updike s Rabbit series, I was a little sad to see the story end, to say good bye to Rabbit Angstrom So admittedly, I experienced a feeling of sweet self indulgence when I discovered the Rabbit Remembered sequel at the back of this collection of stories Or maybe it was bittersweet, sort of like reconnecting with an old boyfriend girlfriend after many years, the excitement and warmth of re establishing that intimate connection and re living past highs and lows ne [...]

  6. Mr Updike is still the grand master of describing the landscapes of American middle class life, he gives you the every aspect of this middle class existence Whenever I read Updike s stories, a sense of American ness always hits me right in the face, I like how I am able to see the American landscapes and its people through his writing.But I found it weird that according to Updike s writing, middle class American men spent most of their time to a think about their past sexual affairs with differe [...]

  7. A triumphant late collection of stories by Updike, and a novella length addition to the Rabbit tetralogy, Rabbit Remembered The stories cover many familiar Updike themes and some revisit aspects of his own life already related in earlier novels The Cats is a late life reflection on the early novel Of the Farm, there is another addition to the canon of stories featuring the self centred writer Henry Bech, and Licks of Love in the Heart of the Cold War is a picaresque Cold War odyssey in which a b [...]

  8. I selected this from the library s shelves mainly for Rabbit RememberedAnd what s he remembered for Why, being Rabbit, of course Rabbit when running, Rabbit when resting and still messing with poor Nelson and Janice from beyond the grave At least it all ends happily Updike seems to express sincere affection for the Angstrom family in all their glorious fuckuppedness Also, oddly, for a short novel published in 2000, it seems to be on a psychic wavelength with post 9 11 fear, worry Reading about Y [...]

  9. I was very surprised and relieved, in a way to discover this book after finishing what I thought was the last of the Rabbit series I enjoyed reading what was left of his legacy from the female perspectives that were so overshadowed by his presence and narration while he was alive but I missed him because part of what made the previous books so great was being so close to his voice It wasn t really nessessary for Updike to go back in to this world and demystify Nelson, Janice, ect but I appreciat [...]

  10. This was a brilliant finish to the Rabbit Angstrom series with typically melancholy prose, vivid characters, gentle reminders of the 4 previous books and even no, really a happy end The other short stories are also great It is amazing how in a few short pages, Updike breathes so much life into his characters.

  11. Really loved most of the short stories but Rabbit Remembered was my favorite I read all 4 of the Rabbit novels several years ago and didn t want them to end It was great finding out what happened to everyone ten years later Updike, much like Richard Yates, writes about the weakness and sadness that is prevalent in all us humans.

  12. Updike often works a landscape that might seem colorless and lacking in nuance middle class middle America yet he invests that landscape with a richness and vitality that transcends category and confounds expectation He uses a palette deep and sensuous to paint these word portraits, and he never has failed to make me wonder at his artistry, skill, and intelligence I have read most of his novels and many of his stories The Rabbit series of four novels is one of the literary achievements of 20th c [...]

  13. Having just read the complete Rabbit Tetralogy for the third time, I wanted to read the novella, Rabbit Remembered, that is a sequel to those excellent works And my response is, it s a pleasant tale but there s really no very good reason to read it Nelson and his newly discovered half sister are the protagonists but without Harry Angstrom himself, there s nothing really compelling in the story.

  14. I wanted to read this mainly for Rabbit Remembered , to complete the Rabbit saga that I read this year This short novel is a fitting cap to the saga It s strange to realize how the man s influence continues to permeate the lives of those he left behind.I was also excited to read some other works from Updike Some of the short stories collected here are nothing short of amazing.

  15. Just read Rabbit Remembered The novella is ok, but I think Updike would have been better off ending the series with Rabbit at Rest.

  16. Good collection of stories from Updike later in life Also, nice to have a Henry Bech and Rabbit Angstrom story.

  17. I have read all 4 Rabbit books and this collection in one month and I have Couples waiting for me Updike is like crack cocaine, it s no good foe you but it s addicting.

  18. Of course, my main motivation in reading Licks of Love was the novella included within, Rabbit Remembered Set near New Year s Eve 1999, we finally get to meet Rabbit s illegitimate daughter Annabelle, who works as a nurse Rabbit s son Nelson, who is having marital problems with his wife Pru, appears to have turned over a new leaf and he is doing good things as a social worker Shock of shocks, Rabbit s wife Janice has now married Ronnie Harrison, somebody that Rabbit was not a big fan.Annabelle l [...]

  19. Having read the whole Rabbit series, and loved them in varying degrees, I had to take the time to read the novella, Rabbit Remembered which accounts for half of this collection I think that is how most readers will come to this book Rabbit Remembered deals with the aftermath of Harry Angstrom s life, not just in a memory but also in the physical and emotional elements he has left behind Ten years have past since his death and life has continued for the family up to the millennium New lives are b [...]

  20. I really enjoyed the novella continuing the Rabbit series, but most of these short stories weren t for me They got repetitive it could of been the same guys cheating on their wives and the ones that were different were weird.

  21. I mainly got hold of this volume to follow up on the Rabbit series The other short stories help to underscore the impression I got of Updike reading the earlier Rabbit novels he writes extensivevly about the effects of the sexual revolution on middle America.It s not a pretty sight, but as I look around me, I see that virtually everyone I know has been impacted by it, directly or indirectly I think that s why I kept returning to the Rabbit series.In the final novella, we see Rabbit s son, his il [...]

  22. It took me a while to get through this book, I won t lie The books is basically divided into two parts The first half is short stories, almost entirely dealing with the subject of marital infidelity The second half is a novella Rabbit Remembered which is a sequel to one of Updike s earlier stories about Harry Rabbit Angstrom I had never read an Updike collection before, and if you had asked me in the beginning section of the book the stories of marital infidelity , I most likely would have told [...]

  23. A collection of a dozen short stories, and a sequel to the Rabbit series which I didn t read The book was published in 2000, but the stories are somewhat older The stories were uneven, some had some good passages but as a whole I wasn t impressed.When I started reading Updike, I was surprised that he seemed to be a serious writer, when I had assumed he was basically a commercial best seller author these stories are in the latter vein he seems to be writing for the sake of writing rather than ha [...]

  24. A nice epilogue to the series but i m not sure it was really needed Without seeing the world through Rabbit s naieve and narcisistic viewpoint, it just doesn t resonate in the same way for me It does remind me of the universal truth that everyone can hold a grudge, even after the enemy is long gone, even dead Nelson doesn t seem like the same person, I suppose you could chalk that up to rehab and therapy Anyway it was nice to see what happened to everyone in a soap opera kind of way But the insi [...]

  25. so, i found this collection of short stories most revolving around marriages crumbling in middle age really cliched and uninspired although beautifully written it essentially beats the brow of the whole banal evil of marriage thing then i had a long discussion with a friend who is an updike devotee he reminded me that updike was one of the first writers to write this sort of story ie, to examine the institution of marriage and all the hypocrisies of its norms or deviations a few stories revolve [...]

  26. Surprised by how much I liked the short stories I deeply loved the Rabbit series and bought the book for the novella at the end, but I think that for the most part I liked the short stories better and felt like Rabbit Remembered was an affirmation of a million pages about one character and his shitty little town in Pennsylvania being enough Not too much, but enough.The weird thing about Updike is even though I really love reading him I feel like I wouldn t recommend him to anyone He can be quite [...]

  27. I was disappointed with the book, but as I read along I realised that I picked the wrong book to begin with It was one of those moments when you see a book on a bookshelf and tell yourself This looks good , and that s exactly what it was , just looks good 2 3rds of this book contains a painfully slow narrative of stories about infidelity in marriages Whilst that might be considered as audacious by some , I found it dreadfully boring despite the narrative being descriptive I wont throw in the tow [...]

  28. Although this is a collection of short stories, the centerpiece is clearly the novella Rabbit Remembered Taking up half the book, Rabbit Remembered provides closure to the series of four novels, as Updike explores the relationships that were previously established and ties things up nicely for a satisfying end While the writing is still of a high quality, it doesn t reach the level of the third and fourth books of the series However, this is only a novella, and one can t expect the range that a [...]

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