Saul Bellow's Heart by Greg Bellow
A Son's Memoir

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Saul Bellow's Heart: A Son's Memoir is a book that falls into a divisive genre: the backstage lives of famous people by their unfamous families.
-Guardian

Synopsis

'The greatest American author ever, in my view ...His sentences seem to weigh more than anyone else's. He is like a force of nature ...He breaks all the rules ...The people in Bellow's fiction are real people, yet the intensity of the gaze that he bathes them in, somehow through the particular, opens up into the universal' Martin Amis 'What Bellow had to tell us in his fiction was that it was worth it, being alive' Linda Grant 'The backbone of twentieth-century American literature has been provided by two novelists - William Faulkner and Saul Bellow. Together they are the Melville, Hawthorne and Twain of the twentieth century' Philip Roth 'If the soul is the mind at its purest, best, clearest, busiest, profoundest, then Bellow's charge has been to restore the soul to American literature' Cynthia Ozick Greg Bellow's bond with his famous-writer father was grounded in a tenderness, social optimism, and light-hearted humour rarely attributed to a man more often remembered for being quick to anger and schooled in rational argument. This intimate memoir gives voice both to the 'Young Saul' - the rebellious, irreverent and ambitious young writer, and dedicated father - and to the 'Old Saul', the writer known to the wider world, whose edges hardened as his social views turned pessimistic. The change taxed the relationship between Bellow and his son so sorely that Greg feared it might not survive. Saul Bellow's Heart is an affectionate, revealing portrait of a fiercely private man, a picture of a moving father-son relationship and a unique insight into one of America's greatest twentieth-century writers.
 

About Greg Bellow

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Gregory Bellow, PhD, was a psychoanalytically oriented psychotherapist for forty years and remains a member of the Core Faculty of The Sanville Institute. He lives in Redwood City, California.
 
Published April 23, 2013 by Bloomsbury USA. 240 pages
Genres: Biographies & Memoirs. Non-fiction
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Critic reviews for Saul Bellow's Heart
All: 4 | Positive: 3 | Negative: 1

Guardian

Good
Reviewed by James Lasdun on May 24 2013

This is his...unwillingness, to examine the extreme nature of the demands art makes on a serious artist...But that's perhaps another book. As for this one, a measure of its success is that it makes you think about such things in the first place.

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Guardian

Above average
Reviewed by EMMA BROCKES on Apr 26 2013

Saul Bellow's Heart: A Son's Memoir is a book that falls into a divisive genre: the backstage lives of famous people by their unfamous families.

Read Full Review of Saul Bellow's Heart: A Son's ... | See more reviews from Guardian

Guardian

Below average
Reviewed by Adam Mars-Jones on Apr 13 2013

Even without these manifestations of the anger he denies, Saul Bellow's Heart would be a forlorn project. It's just not possible for Greg Bellow to win the race he insists on running...

Read Full Review of Saul Bellow's Heart: A Son's ... | See more reviews from Guardian

Financial Times

Above average
Reviewed by Talitha Stevenson on Apr 12 2013

Despite the literal “Old Saul”/“Young Saul” divide, the real source of tonal intrigue in this memoir is Greg Bellow’s metaphor of the son’s “blind eye” and his own vacillating recourse to it.

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