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Memoirs of Montparnasse [Paperback]

By John Glassco & Louis Begley (Introduction by)
Our Price $ 14.41  
Retail Value $ 16.95  
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Item Number 426294  
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Item Specifications...

Pages   236
Est. Packaging Dimensions:   Length: 0.75" Width: 5.25" Height: 8"
Weight:   0.65 lbs.
Binding  Softcover
Release Date   May 29, 2007
Publisher   NYRB Classics
ISBN  1590171845  
EAN  9781590171844  

Availability  0 units.

Item Description...
"Memoirs of Montparnasse" is a delicious book about being young, restless, reckless, and without cares. It is also the best and liveliest of the many chronicles of 1920s Paris and the exploits of the lost generation. In 1928, nineteen-year-old John Glassco escaped Montreal and his overbearing father for the wilder shores of Montparnasse. He remained there until his money ran out and his health collapsed, and he enjoyed every minute of his stay. Remarkable for their candor and humor, Glassco's memoirs have the daft logic of a wild but utterly absorbing adventure, a tale of desire set free that is only faintly shadowed by sadness at the inevitable passage of time.

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More About John Glassco & Louis Begley

Register your artisan biography and upload your photo! John Glassco (1909-1981) was born in Montreal and attended McGill, but moved to Paris before attaining his degree. Glassco won the Governor General's Award in 1971 for his Selected Poems.
Louis Begley lives in New York City. His previous novels are Wartime Lies, The Man Who Was Late, As Max Saw It, About Schimdt, Mistler's Exit, Schmidt Delivered, and Shipwreck.

John Glassco was born in 1909 and died in 1981.

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Reviews - What do our customers think?
Enjoy yourself (it's later than you think)  Aug 24, 2008
It's good to see that John Glassco's hilarious if not always reliable memoir of his youthful exploits in Paris is back in print. From what I gather, this edition includes an introduction that comments on the fictitiousness of some events described in the book and its real date of composition. (I'll give you a clue: it's later than you think.) So I would like to exhort everyone and anyone with an appetite for stories about the good old days in Paris, when James Joyce, Ernest Hemingway and Gertrude Stein roamed freely, to pick up this book and enjoy themselves.

However, you should bear in mind that around 25 per cent of it is fiction. Also, if you really want to know who's who, you are better off with the 1995 OUP edition with notes by Michael Gnarowski. This contains a good introduction and reveals the real identity of many thinly veiled characters in an appendix. (Djuna Barnes' lover Thelma Wood is renamed Emily Pine - you get the idea.) But if you are less detective minded than me, I guess this new edition will do just fine.

For further reading, I warmly recommend Being Geniuses Together by the very outspoken Robert McAlmon, with later material interpolated by Kay Boyle, yet another unreliable narrator. Both of these memoirs are infinitely more entertaining than Stein's The Autobiography of Alice B. Toklas or Hemingway's maudlin A Moveable Feast. The last of these was hailed as a return to form, but I believe it contains much material that was actually written *earlier* than you'd think. Quite the opposite of Glassco in that respect!
Memories  Jul 7, 2004
John Glassco writes about the Paris arts scene of the 1920s, telling the story of an artist as a young man. It's not always true, but it is always fun, as fiction and autobiography blend to create a good read. Has all the sex, boozing and pathos that was typical of 1920s Paris as its been memorialized in literature, whether that's a good thing or not is for you to decide.
Unintentional Masterpiece  Jul 16, 2000
It was 1927; John Glassco was 17 when he left Montreal to go to Paris with the intention of becoming a famous writer. He kept a journal of his life there for the next five years. He was convinced he was a genius who would one day produce a masterpiece. The irony is that the masterpiece turned out to be these memoirs edited and published when he was 59.

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