Book reviews, Pullitzer, Booker, Costa and Children's Book reviews
Book reviews, Pullitzer, Booker, Costa and Children's Book reviews
Prize Winning Fiction
Prize Winning Fiction

1982 Pulitzer Prize for Fiction Winner

Rabbit is Rich by John Updike


Publisher: Andre Deutsch

Length: 429 pages

About: 1970’s Car Salesman’s Mid-Life Crisis

Style: 3rd person

Where: US (Brewer, Pensylvania)

When: 1979



Publisher’s synopsis:

Harry Angstrom AKA Rabbit is heading his wife,s family business, selling fuel efficient Toyotas in oil crisis-torn 1979 America. Everything is going fine until his 23 year-old son, Nelson, drops out of college and returns with a pregnant girlfriend, whilst his mother-in-law insists Harry give Nelson a sales job at the dealership. Nelson proceeds to crash cars and speculates on old fuel guzzling American convertibles... Rabbit is not best pleased.




Why would I laugh at him? The same thing happened to me.'... 'He doesn't know that Harry.'... 'How could he not? His birthday keeps coming around seven months after our anniversary.'





Rabbit Is Rich, the third of John Updike's romances with his favorite hero, Harry Angstrom (and with Harry's and our acceleration from discontent to dismay), is a brilliant performance.....

The New York Review of Books, Alfred Kazin 1981


Not so good:

Someone once said that reading a John O'Hara novel is like reading the Sears catalogue. Updike can be like that too, since once he starts on the country club, or the creperie, or the Murkett's medicine chest, or the way it was, he usually goes until exhausted. So the book is too long.

New York Times 27th September 1981


About the author

John Updike was born in 118 March 1932 in Shillington, Pennsylvania. He was graduated from Harvard College in 1954, and spent a year in England on the Knox Fellowship, at the Ruskin School of Drawing and Fine Art in Oxford. From 1955 to 1957 he was a member of the staff of The New Yorker, to which he has contributed numerous short stories, poems, and book reviews.


Updike married Mary E. Pennington, an art student at Radcliffe College, in 1953. She accompanied him to Oxford, England, where he attended art school and where their first child, Elizabeth, was born in 1955. The couple had three more children together: writer David (born 1957), Michael (born 1959) and Miranda (born 1960). They divorced in 1974. In 1977 Updike married Martha Ruggles Bernhard, with whom he lived for more than thirty years in Beverly Farms, Massachusetts.


He died of lung cancer at a hospice in Danvers, Massachusetts, on 27 January 2009, at the age of 76.
























































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<1981> -  <1983>














Page turner







Age guide: 18



Novels by same author:



Rabbit, Run was turned into a movie directed by Jack Smight starring James Caan in 1970. Rabbit Run was the first of 5 Rabbit novels, Rabbit is Rich is the 3rd.






2016 Pulitzer Prize Winner

It's a massive day in arts and journalism because the 100th annual Pulitzer Prize winners were just announced, and there's a big surprise. 2015's best artistic and nonfiction writing across 21 categories were recognized during a ceremony Monday afternoon at Columbia University in New York City. The first Pulitzer Prize was awarded to Hebert Bayward Swope, a reporter for The New York World, in 1916. (And if you're as big a fan of Newsies as I am, that paper should ring a bell, but try to think of it more positively.)

The major prize for book nerds, the 2016 Pulitzer Prize for Fiction went to The Sympathizer by Viet Thanh Nguyen (Grove Press), a legitimate surprise, if you've been paying attention to the book nerd and industry buzz. The feeling around the prize in the last few months would have you putting all your hard-earned cash down on A Little Life by Hanya Yanagihara to take home the award, but that's why you should never gamble. Viet Thanh Nguyen is no less deserving, and moreover, it's his debut novel, which makes it such a wonderful win.

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