Friday, 30 January 2009


Rebekah and I had a chat about Updike and the like as we walked the dogs yesterday. I was surprised that the obit in El Pais listed his books and did not mention Couples.
The book came out in 1968, when I was 27, and Franco was still running Spain, so the book may never have been published there. Not much point now, I think.
I found it a disturbingly accurate picture of the lives many people seemed to be living, including myself, despite the different continents. Adultery, broken marriages, furtive trysts, assorted scandals - all set in smart suburban houses with polished pine floors, Philip Morris wallpaper, leather sofas and restored Victorian fireplaces.
Reb dislikes him as a sexist, along with Bellow, Roth and Co. She sees them, not simply reporting objectively on the subject in the manner of Flaubert, but rolling around gleefully and boastfully in it - like our dogs do in pig shit.
The less I say, the better.

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