James Salter was the celebrated author of six novels (The Hunters, ; The Arm of Flesh, ; A Sport and a Pastime, ; Light Years, ; Solo Faces, . A Sport and A Pastime is a seductive classic that established James Salter’s reputation as one of the finest writers of our time. It is remarkable for its eroticism, . The astonishing novel and “tour de force” about a love affair in postwar France from the iconic author of All That Is (The New York Times Book Review).

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Mar 15, Spogt rated it it was amazing Shelves: But he is also the voyeur who repeatedly confesses his own mysterious incapacity for physical love, an emotional handicap that he remedies by imagining the bed sports between the two young people. It is the moment where one begins to no longer believe in the self-myth, but to believe instead in the glory of another human being, spprt it is this trap that many shrink from. The reader must be willingly transported into the believable unreal, as here the narrator is transported, via the erogenous imagination, deep into the heart of carnality and blinding emotion.

qnd The two authors featured most prominently in that article were Salter and Peter Matthiessen. Page 1 of 1 Start over Page 1 of 1.

If you wrote about it, you would do it better. Fight or flight; sink or swim. Perfectly captured moments Hallmark could only destroy with its banality.

That such a feat occurs across a mere pages is breathtaking, and though its narrative choreography seems simple, the novel paatime anything but minor.

I many respects, they were like an old married couple, without the sex: Phillip occasionall Eleven pages into A Sport and a Pastime, the unnamed narrator throws us a curveball: But the q serves to illuminate the subtle ups-and downs of a relationship and to show how the emotional texture of this imagined affair evolves.


James Salter: A Sport and a Pastime (Video ) – IMDb

They curve in behind and mould it… The sheep move in a current, like a stream – the edges cling, the center continually flows. With Anne-Marie, Dean is keenly aware of this. Am I old and indecisive? In a way it’s not unlike the GK Chesterton problem: It’s a story of things that never existed. Views Read Edit View history.

He is the writer who analyzes the situation, invents it and orders the sequence of events by whim or design. It didn’t do anything for me, if anything, it was all very unsexy. And I see his whole appearance differently.

Get A Sport and a Pastime from Amazon. Dean, perpetually sporh and always on the verge of financial ruin, lives off the generosity of his rich father who lives in Paris. Lets stop beating about the bush here.

They do not last forever. Iames sad, sad, sad. When the narrator describes Dean, what he is really describing is an idealization, a projection of all the things the narrator wants to be: What can it be, beyond temporal, beyond other?

For the most part, PASTIME is the story of this affair, as the narrator imagines this couple in bed and traveling through the villages of France, where the narrator thinks the real France resides.

There is a fund they can draw together.

A Sport and a Pastime

The final lines of the novel hit closer to home than I expected: It is not a coincidence that the narrator mentions that he was masturbating twice a day the year Anne-Marie was born. Goodreads helps you keep track of books you want to read. Read more from the Study Guide. You are like a sad story, like leaves in the street. Deep in feathers, breathing softly, they lie. As a symbol of the transient character of the romance there is the luxury convertible driven by Dean, a Delahaye coupe that is revealed in the novel’s endnotes to be the sporg car pasttime author glimpsed in a Paris dealership window in his own youth, and the car he actually bought later in life: I’d never heard of James Salter, spirt be honest.


Even if you buy for the sex, you’ll stay for the writing. The language here is similar, especially recurring reference to fragmentsmirrors, light, and water, and occasional switches of tense, but the storytelling is different, darker, and explicitly untrustworthy. A great big deal is made about this romance, but there was never a point where I felt it deserved this much attention — z rather, this level of obsession. Intelligent, yes, but somehow he is weary of his gifts. It can be proudly worn, but its weight often outstrips its practicality.

Finally, it will become single nights, each one perilous as a lunar journey. Given the explicit sexual content, the novel might not be for anyone, but I believe Salter treated the subject of physical love with an artist brush, stylishly and emotionally rather than mechanically.

Get fast, free shipping with Amazon Prime. The unnamed narrator freely admits that much of his observation is in fact his own fantasy of the couple, and includes a number of sexually-explicit descriptions of their day-to-day existence as he imagines it.

View the Lesson Plans. Maybe yes, maybe no. The rain is falling all around them. The narrator quickly comes to admire him. Their relationship develops slowly, but from the beginning there is a heavy sexual element. When they do write about sex, it is only other men who might find it remotely plausible, let alone satisfying.

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