Your price
Out of Stock

Last Days

By (author) Joyce Carol Oates
Format: Hardback
Publisher: Vintage Publishing, London, United Kingdom
Imprint: Jonathan Cape Ltd
Published: 17th Jul 1986
Dimensions: w 140mm h 220mm
Weight: 434g
ISBN-10: 0224022954
ISBN-13: 9780224022958
Barcode No: 9780224022958

New & Used

Seller Information Condition Price
Out of Stock

What Reviewers Are Saying

Submit your review
Kirkus US
Oates' stories, often so unwieldy in their excess length, can and do occasionally mold to a successful shape: the story that's told from far back, for example, the tale that summarily telescopes an entire life. Such a story, and the best of this collection, is "The Man Whom Women Adored," about an outrageously successful yet modest Don Juan - and it is thanks to its precis quality that it succeeds; instead of trafficking in intimate scenes, it provides a satisfying long view of a life that's very suited to Oates' amplitude. (By way of contrast is the title story, about a young Jewish genius who assassinates a rabbi in a synagogue during services, then kills himself; here the case-study is too close-in, hence airless and forced, and not nearly as successful.) Also effective: a tale in Oates' gothic/injury mode - about an ex-mental-patient who becomes a stepmother, and is then abandoned with the stepchildren. Unfortunately, however, this collection is badly weighed down by a number of travel stories - in which celebrity-writer Oates converts {and justifies?) her semi-official literary journeys to writers' conferences and cultural congresses into a very thin, outrageously padded kind of fiction. ("A sort of bombed-out wasteland here, a zone of abandoned houses, weedy paper-strewn vacant lots, ancient billboards, posters in tatters, even a few hulks of cars. As one nears the Wall the curious thing is, history is left behind.") Furthermore, these quasi-autobiographical pieces often involve the romantic adventures at each stop (never convincing) of a stick-figure-like female character. A few real stories, then, but mostly skippable Oates trivia. (Kirkus Reviews)