How does a novelist write about the facts of his life after spending years fictionalising those facts with irrepressible daring and originality?
What becomes of 'the facts' after they have been smelted down for art's sake? In The Facts - Philip Roth's idiosyncratic autobiography - we find out. Focusing on five episodes in his life, Roth gives a portrait of his secure city childhood in Newark, through to his first marriage, clashes with the Jewish establishment over Goodbye, Columbus and his writing of Portnoy's Complaint. In true Rothian style, his fictional self Nathan Zuckerman is allowed the final, coruscating word of reply.
"A dazzling performance"
"The Facts is a lively and serious version of a novelist's life"
"A fine account of the origin of Roth's fiction - Philip Roth continues to be the most vigorous and truthful of American writers"
Here are five quotes from The Plot Against America, a counterfactual nightmare and a powerfully insightful tale of tyranny taking over, that can teach us about the present.
Philip Roth wrote 31 books over the course of his career. Between them, the books have won prizes, caused controversy, and generally shaken up the landscape of American fiction. But if you’re new to Roth, where do you start? At the beginning, the middle, the end? Six of his biggest fans in publishing share their advice.