Everyman

  • by Philip Roth
  • Narrated by George Guidall
  • 4 hrs and 7 mins
  • Unabridged Audiobook

Publisher's Summary

There is no more decorated American writer living today than Philip Roth, the New York Times best-selling author of American Pastoral, The Human Stain, and The Plot Against America. He has won a Pulitzer Prize, two National Book Awards, two National Book Critics Circle Awards, two PEN/Faulkner Awards, and numerous other distinctions.The hero of Everyman is obsessed with mortality. As he reminds himself at one point, "I'm 34! Worry about oblivion when you're 75." But he cannot help himself. He is the ex-husband in three marriages gone wrong. He is the father of two sons who detest him, despite a daughter who adores him. And as his health worsens, he is the envious brother of a much fitter man. A masterful portrait of one man's inner struggles, Everyman is a brilliant showcase for one of the world's most distinguished novelists.

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What the Critics Say



2007 PEN/Faulkner Award, Fiction

"Roth continues exercising his career-defining, clear-eyed, intelligent vision of how the psychology of families works." (Booklist)
"This is an artful yet surprisingly readable treatise on...well, on being human....Through it all, there's that Rothian voice: pained, angry, arrogant, and deeply, wryly funny." (Publishers Weekly)
"Our most accomplished novelist. . . . [With Everyman] personal tenderness has reached a new intensity." (The New Yorker)

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Customer Reviews

Most Helpful

Old age isn't a battle. Old age is a massacre.

The older I get, the more tolerant I get of Roth's later novellas. I remember thinking when I read one ten plus years ago that they were simply indulgences. Roth throwing off and idea and turning it into a novella. Why couldn't he go back to writing his great novels. Now, as I read some of his last several novels these last several months. Older now. I think I might understand. They aren't as robust as his great novels of the 1990s. But they are still pretty fantastic. They are memoirs. They are ... reflections of life prior to death, life in anticipation of death, life contemplating death. They are the murmurs of a man standing on the edge of the abyss.

There were certain parts of this novel that seemed to touch aspects of my own life. I too had a brother who seemed to have perfect health. My older brother could fail to brush his teeth for a year and not get a cavity. He rarely had a headache, a fever, a cold. He was an Army Ranger and later a decorated helicopter pilot. I was the opposite. Flat feet, pigeon-toed, diabetic, rheumatic, thyroid issues, bad teeth, Marfan syndrome, heart issues, struggling with pain nearly every day of my life.

There seems to exists in brothers that share this weird imbalance a measured shadow. At one level there is care and concern and on another level an almost hero worship that easily slides (at times) into a jealousy and enviousness that makes one empathetic to Cain.

Anyway, this is a very human novel about loneliness, aging, relationships, memory and death. It isn't perfect and far from Roth's best, but it is still very good and FAR better than 'he Humbling'
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- Darwin8u "I write for myself, for my own pleasure. And I want to be left alone to do it. - Salinger ^(;,;)^"

Full Frontal Roth

This is a powerful book. If you are looking for a happy ending, denouement, or epiphany – look elsewhere. Right off the bat this book begins at the end, the funeral of the main, nameless character. So there are no illusions about how the story ends. But that’s really the point, because that is how the story ends for every human. Says the author, ‘old age isn’t a war- it’s a massacre.’
In a short space the back-story is filled in; from the main character’s childhood, his loving, Jewish parents, his doting big brother to his three failed marriages, his career uncertainty, his selfless daughter and estranged sons. Throughout, his medical history is detailed, along with his hypochondriacal dread. All of this is related in perfect Philip Roth unflinching fashion. And if this sounds dry, it is anything but. Roth skillfully lays bare the humanity of each character in only the way this author can.
This book will make the listener look at his or hers own life and mortality and I must say that it impacted me as strongly as any novel in recent history.
As with all Roth’s novels one can’t help but wonder that some of the material is autobiographical. Just how much is or isn’t makes no matter, because it could be universally autobiographical… for every man and woman.
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- JOHN "Audible Member Since 2003"

Book Details

  • Release Date: 05-08-2006
  • Publisher: Recorded Books