Sunday, September 21, 2008

From The Sunday Times
September 21, 2008

Indignation by Philip Roth
The Sunday Times review by Peter Kemp

Butchery of two kinds pervades Philip Roth's thrilling new novel.
Gleaming in the foreground are the razor-sharp knives and meat cleavers of a kosher butcher's shop in 1950s New Jersey. Lethally flashing in the background are the bayonets of Chinese soldiers fighting US troops in Korea. Ribs and shanks of lamb, bloodied hunks of beef and the bodies of ritually slaughtered chickens dangle from hooks in the Newark neighbourhood store 12 miles north of New York. Hacked and sliced carcasses of conscripts strew the Far East battlefields.

Ominously situated between these two abattoir-like environments is Marcus Messner, a hard-working straight-A student who has entered college in downtown Newark (the city where Roth grew up) at about the same time US forces entered South Korea to help repel the invasion by north Koreans aided by Soviet and Chinese communists. Marcus isn't the only recent Roth protagonist to be menaced by an ugly turn in his country's history.
Read the full review at the Sunday Times online.
Indignation by Philip Roth - Jonathan Cape - £16.99 - pp233

1 comment:

Mary McCallum said...

Great review of Roth's novel on Barnes and Noble by Mark Sarvas Hope that link worked!

(Can I suggest interested parties read the review only and then zip down to their nearest independent book store if interested in a follow-up purchase?)