Literary Classics

Been Down So Long It Looks Like Up to Me by Richard Fariña

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By Richard Fariña

Fariña conjures up the Sixties as accurately, wittily, and poignantly as F. Scott Fitzgerald captured the Jazz Age. The hero, Gnossus Pappadopoulis, weaves his means throughout the psychedelic panorama, encountering—among different things—mescaline, ladies, artwork, gluttony, falsehood, technological know-how, prayer, and, sometimes, fact. A portrait of an explosive decade, gleaming with artistic writing and conveying the essence of a new release, Been Down see you later It seems like as much as Me, as Thomas Pynchon writes within the creation, "comes on just like the Hallelujah refrain performed by means of 2 hundred kazoo avid gamers with ideal pitch."
"A extraordinary storyteller, Fariña is healthy to hitch the corporate of Kerouac, Kesey, and Pynchon." —San Francisco Chronicle

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What these great expectations ultimately do, as the plot unfolds, is to send Pip right back to his story舗s beginning, to the stolen file and pork pie that bind his fate to that of a convict. All Pip舗s hopes for the future lead him straight to his past. Our sense of the futility of Pip舗s expectations is heightened by their very arbitrariness. Pip differs from many of his Victorian orphan counterparts in that his parents are comfortably accounted for from the outset. If there were any substantial inheritance headed Pip舗s way舒any missing rich uncle (Ȥ la Jane Eyre) or benevolent family friend (Ȥ la Oliver Twist)舒 those persons would certainly have stepped forward by now to claim him.

David Copperfield (1849-1850), Bleak House (1852-1853), Hard Times (1854), A Tale of Two Cities (1859), Great Expectations (1860- 1861), and Our Mutual Friend (1864-1865) are the great works of his masterful and prolific later period. In 1858 Dickens舗s twenty-three-year marriage to Catherine Hogarth dissolved when he fell in love with Ellen Ternan, a young actress. The last years of his life were filled with intense activity: writing, managing amateur theatricals, and undertaking several reading tours that reinforced the public舗s favorable view of his work but took an enormous toll on his health.

He muttered then, considering. 舡 舠My sister, sir舒Mrs. 舡 said he. And looked down at his leg. After darkly looking at his leg and at me several times, he came closer to my tombstone, took me by both arms, and tilted me back as far as he could hold me; so that his eyes looked most powerfully down into mine, and mine looked most helplessly up into his. 舠Now lookee here,舡 he said, 舠the question being whether you舗re to be let to live. 舡 After each question he tilted me over a little more, so as to give me a greater sense of helplessness and danger.

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