Sunday, 24 June 2012
Confessions of a Spent Youth
Author: Vance Bourjaily
Year of publication: 1961, Corgi edition 1968
Back cover blurb: 'Never before has the sexual life of an American male been so completely revealed. New York, Africa, Naples, Japan... four continents, seven countries, twelve women... a girl named Jeannie, one named Moomie, and Chizuko...
Quick flick reveals: Some guy crosses the planet having sex, as well as doing some army stuff. Seems to be a proper novel, influenced by Hemingway and everything, and not a wank book, despite some very suspicious vibes being sent out by the packaging. It's also weirdly long for a book which doesn't seem to have a plot. Bourjaily looks like he could well be a serious author of quality whose work has slipped out of view with time. Which is exactly the sort of thing we're looking for here, so that's good.
Random paragraph: '''Pretty, isn't it?" She said, almost bitterly, covering the place with her hand, and stood up, turning her back to me and to the other bed. "I've got to take care now," she muttered, supporting herself on the bedside table. "Where's the john?"'