V. est une lettre mystérieuse qui apparaît ici et là dans le journal intime laissé par Stanley Stencil, disparu en 1919. En 1945, son fils Herbert va chercher ce qui se cache derrière cette initiale. Très vite, V. va se révéler être une énigme aux nombreuses significations, une figure féminine aux multiples visages - Victoria, une anglaise violée au Caire ; Véra, une danseuse allemande pré-nazie dans le Sud-Ouest africain ; Véronique, un rat femelle des égoûts de New York ; ou encore une lesbienne du boulevard de Clichy - mais aussi un pays appelé Vheissu, qui inquiète beaucoup les services secrets...
This short fable followed Pynchon's first novel "V." First published in 1966, it is a surreal comedy satirizing Californian life. Oedipa Maas, a recent heiress, pursues enquiries into the nature of her inheritance and the motivation of her dead lover and is led on an ambiguous trail of clues.
It's been awhile since private eye Doc Sportello has seen his ex-girlfriend. Suddenly out of nowhere she shows up with a story about a plot to kidnap a billionaire land developer whom she just happens to be in love with. Doc knows that 'love' is another of those words going around at the moment, except that this one usually leads to trouble.
Tyrone Slothrop, a GI in London in 1944, has a big problem. Whenever he gets an erection, a Blitz bomb hits. Slothrop gets excited, and then, as Thomas Pynchon puts it in his sibilant opening sentence, 'a screaming comes across the sky', heralding an angel of death, a V-2 rocket. Soon Tyrone is on the run from legions of bizarre enemies through the phantasmagoric horrors of Germany.
Gravity's Rainbow is never a single story, but a proliferation of characters - Pirate Prentice, Teddy Bloat, Tantivy Mucker-Maffick, Saure Bummer, and more - and events that tantalize the reader with suggestions of vast patterns only just past our comprehension. It is a blizzard of references to science, history, high culture, and the lowest of jokes and among the most important novels of our time.
Winner of the National Book Award.
Thomas Pynchon is up to his usual business. Characters stop what they're doing to sing what are for the most part stupid songs. Strange sexual practices take place. Obscure languages are spoken, not always idiomatically. Contrary-to-fact occurrences occur. Maybe it's not the world, but with a minor adjustment or two it's what the world might be.
It is 2001 in New York City, in the lull between the collapse of the dotcom boom and the terrible events of September 11th. Silicon Alley is a ghost town, Web 1.0 is having adolescent angst, Google has yet to IPO, Microsoft is still considered the Evil Empire. There may not be quite as much money around as there was at the height of the tech bubble, but there's no shortage of swindlers looking to grab a piece of what's left.
Maxine Tarnow is running a nice little fraud investigation business on the Upper West Side, chasing down different kinds of small-scale con artists. She used to be legally certified but her licence got pulled a while back, which has actually turned out to be a blessing because now she can follow her own code of ethics - carry a Beretta, do business with sleazebags, hack into people's bank accounts - without having too much guilt about any of it. Otherwise, just your average working mum - two boys in elementary school, an off-and-on situation with her sort of semi-ex-husband Horst, life as normal as it ever gets in the neighbourhood - till Maxine starts looking into the finances of a computer-security firm and its billionaire geek CEO, whereupon things begin rapidly to jam onto the subway and head downtown. She soon finds herself mixed up with a drug runner in an art deco motorboat, a professional nose obsessed with Hitler's aftershave, a neoliberal enforcer with footwear issues, plus elements of the Russian mob and various bloggers, hackers, code monkeys and entrepreneurs, some of whom begin to show up mysteriously dead. Foul play, of course.
With occasional excursions into the Deep Web and out to Long Island, Thomas Pynchon, channelling his inner Jewish mother, brings us a historical romance of New York in the early days of the Internet, not that distant in calendar time but galactically remote from where we've journeyed to since.
Will perpetrators be revealed, forget about brought to justice? Will Maxine have to take the handgun out of her purse? Will she and Horst get back together? Will Jerry Seinfeld make an unscheduled guest appearance? Will accounts secular and karmic be brought into balance?
Hey. Who wants to know?
Slow Learner is a compilation of early stories written between 1959 and 1964, before Pynchon achieved recognition as a prominent writer for his 1963 novel, V and containing a revelatory essay on his early influences and writing.
The collection consists of five short stories: 'The Small Rain', 'Lowlands', 'Entropy', 'Under the Rose', and 'The Secret Integration', as well as an introduction written by Pynchon himself for the 1984 publication. The five stories were originally published individually in various literary magazines but in 1984, after Pynchon had achieved greater recognition, Slow Learner was published to collect and copyright the stories into one volume. The introduction also offers a rare insight into Pynchon's own views on his work and influences.
A Best Book of the Year for the Chicago Tribune, Washington Post, San Francisco Chronicle, and Los Angeles Times Part noir, part psychedelic romp, all Thomas Pynchon--private eye Doc Sportello surfaces, occasionally, out of a marijuana haze to watch the end of an era.
Its been awhile since Doc Sportello has seen his ex-girlfriend. Suddenly out of nowhere she shows up with a story about a plot to kidnap a billionaire land developer whom she just happens to be in love with. Its the tail end of the psychedelic sixties in L.A., and Doc knows that love is another one of those words going around at the moment, like trip or groovy, except this one usually leads to trouble.
In this lively yarn, Thomas Pynchon, working in an unaccustomed genre, provides a classic illustration of the principle that if you can remember the sixties, you werent there . . . or . . . if you were there, then you . . . or, wait, is it . . .;;;;