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Publisher's Summary

The remarkable renaissance of Patricia Highsmith continues with the publication of Patricia Highsmith: Selected Novels and Short Stories, featuring the groundbreaking novels Strangers on a Train and The Price of Salt as well as a trove of penetrating short stories. With a critical introduction by Joan Schenkar, situating Highsmith’s classic works within her own tumultuous life, this book provides a useful guide to some of her most dazzlingly seductive writing. Strangers on a Train, transformed into a legendary film by Alfred Hitchcock, displays Highsmith’s genius for psychological characterization and tortuous suspense, while The Price of Salt, with its lesbian lovers and a creepy PI, provides a thrilling and highly controversial depiction of “the love that dare not speak its name”. This book firmly establishes Highsmith’s centrality to American culture by presenting key works that went on to influence half a century of literature and film. Abandoned by the wider reading public in her lifetime, Highsmith finally gets the canonical recognition that is her due.
©2011 Diogenes Verlag AG, Zurich; 1993 by Diogenes Verlag AG, Zurich; Introduction 2011 by W. W. Norton & Company, Inc. (P)2010 Blackstone Audio, Inc.
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Critic Reviews

“Patricia Highsmith’s novels are peerlessly disturbing…bad dreams that keep us thrashing for the rest of the night.” (New Yorker)
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Customer Reviews

Most Helpful

By Linda J. Westerschulte on 09-18-11

Strangers on a Train

I wanted to read Strangers on a Train because I love the noir film classic based on this book. It was interesting because Patricia Highsmith is a master at painting the slow downward spiral, the menace in the every-day, and the grim experience of late stage alcoholism (note to self: it does not look like fun). But it needs editing. The same scenes repeat themselves too often and the protagonist goes over the same ground and comes to the same decisions over and over again. The book just doesn't get down to business and go where it's going. By the end I was weary enough of the story that I didn't much care how it came out.

I didn't care for Bronson Pinchot's reading. In trying to produce southern accents he made the southerners sound bored - not southern. Also, he used a particular lilting drag for the bad guy, the faithful woman, and the private eye. These are all very different characters who should have to some extent their own voices, or at least not the same odd drawn-out way of speaking that makes them blend together. And I wish men readers would just read women's voices normally - Pinchot, like some other men I've heard, tries to make it clear this is a female voice by making it breathy or whiny. The female voices were annoying.

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17 of 23 people found this review helpful


By Peace on 04-11-15

Long before "Carol," I admired and respected Ms. Highsmith

Her writing is sublime. Her stories rich with authentic emotional details. The angst of life and moral dilemmas vividly detailed. This is a full measure of her talent for real life storytelling. She captivates you with problematic characters which you can hold up to your self mirror. Sheer rather gruesome delight.

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6 of 8 people found this review helpful

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