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2016/04/05 - Bucky F*cking Dent

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2016/04/05 - Bucky F*cking Dent

Post by Pippytu on Sat 23 Apr - 8:58

Was this posted yet?

From USA Today

Bucky…Dent by David Duchovny; Farrar, Straus and Giroux, 304 pp.; fiction

The actor’s second novel is a rites-of-passage tragicomedy about a father and son, set in 1978 New York City during the months leading up to one of Major League Baseball’s most legendary pennant-race finales.

USA TODAY says ****. “Hilarious and deeply touching… (a) moving, beautiful novel.”



http://www.usatoday.com/story/life/books/2016/04/23/weekend-picks-for-book-lovers/83297894/

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Re: 2016/04/05 - Bucky F*cking Dent

Post by sir on Sat 23 Apr - 16:30


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Re: 2016/04/05 - Bucky F*cking Dent

Post by jade1013 on Sat 23 Apr - 16:31


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Re: 2016/04/05 - Bucky F*cking Dent

Post by sir on Sun 24 Apr - 3:14




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2016/04/05 - Bucky F*cking Dent

Post by jade1013 on Sun 24 Apr - 3:15


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Re: 2016/04/05 - Bucky F*cking Dent

Post by sir on Sun 24 Apr - 12:00

Bucky F&*$ing Dent



I finished reading the book Bucky F&*$ing Dent that was written by the actor (and I guess writer) David Duchovny.

I heard him speaking about the book on a radio show and decided to grab it.

Duchovny explained that he was in the New England area and he heard two Bostonians talking about the game in 1978 to settle the AL East. The guys were roofers and when they got into the discussion one mentioned:

Bucky F&*$ing Dent.

As writing ideas go...it was all Duchovny needed to get started.

The book was really good...I enjoyed the characters and the baseball talk throughout.

I also liked it because I recalled every single minute of that day so long ago.

I even remember the day before...

...I was listening to the Yankees play the lowly Indians.

All they had to do was win and they would eliminate the Sux.

They got hammered.

I was 13 years old.

I was pissed!!

Mostly because the game to settle it all would be played on Monday afternoon...and I had school and a soccer game immediately following it.

I hated soccer but was on the team because I liked the coach.

"I'm skipping the soccer game," I announced.

"You aren't skipping anything," Mom said. "You signed up. You have to show up."

I was miserable!

"You'll be home for the end of the game."

I tried Dad...but he sided with Mom:

"You have to do what you said you'd do."

(Those two really ruined me as I became the most responsible adult ever!).

So I went to the game...

...I had a tiny transistor radio.

I knew my coach would let me listen during the soccer game because he was also a Yankees fan.

Except he wanted to listen to the game too!

I had the radio through the first few innings.

Boston 2 New York 0 was the score in the middle innings when Coach Loretto grabbed the radio from me and sent me into the game.

I was kicking and screaming...but I went into the game and never really drifted from the sideline much.

"Fuzzy!" Coach yelled out across the field, "Bucky Dent just hit a three-run homer!"

I thought he was messing with me.

Dent didn't hit homers!

I ran straight off the field as the ball went rolling by. Coach Loretto was laughing. We shared the radio bud for a moment.

It was true!

Mercifully the soccer game ended.

I made my way home.

Reggie hit a homer to make it New York 5 Boston 2 but there was still time left.

As we pulled into the driveway I was struck by a strange sight:

Dad's car was home!

I raced to the house.

Dad was sitting in the living room watching Goose Gossage try to hold on in the 9th.

"Why aren't you working?" I asked.

"I'm sick," Dad said.

We both laughed.

Goose hung on, retiring Yaz on a popup to Nettles.

Yankees 5 Red Sox 4.

Two weeks later they won the World Series for the 22nd time.

So, to David Duchovny...

...thanks for the memory!


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Re: 2016/04/05 - Bucky F*cking Dent

Post by jade1013 on Sun 24 Apr - 12:12


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Re: 2016/04/05 - Bucky F*cking Dent

Post by Sabine on Sun 24 Apr - 12:53

Thanks, that was very sweet.
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Re: 2016/04/05 - Bucky F*cking Dent

Post by sir on Tue 26 Apr - 16:56

PopSugar Reading Challenge: A Book Written By A Celebrity




So I had to choose a book written by a celebrity for this week’s prompt and it doesn’t get much more famous David Duchovny to me, I mean he’s Fox freakin Mulder!

No? Just me then. Right. Well on with the show.

This isn’t David Duchovny’s first novel. He wrote an X-Files novelisation back in the day (Quake) that I quite enjoyed. He also wrote Holy Cow: A Modern-Day Dairy Tale which came out last year and I haven’t read but  I think I’ll have to. Just look at that title!



Synopsis (from GoodReads)

Ted Fullilove, aka Mr. Peanut, is not like other Ivy League grads. He shares an apartment with Goldberg, his beloved battery-operated fish, sleeps on a bed littered with yellow legal pads penned with what he hopes will be the next great American novel, and spends the waning malaise-filled days of the Carter administration at Yankee Stadium, waxing poetic while slinging peanuts to pay the rent.

When Ted hears the news that his estranged father, Marty, is dying of lung cancer, he immediately moves back into his childhood home, where a whirlwind of revelations ensues. The browbeating absentee father of his youth is living to make up for lost time, but his health dips drastically whenever his beloved Red Sox lose. And so, with help from a crew of neighborhood old-timers and the lovely Mariana–Marty’s Nuyorican grief counselor–Ted orchestrates the illusion of a Sox winning streak, enabling Marty and the Red Sox to reverse the Curse of the Bambino and cruise their way to World Series victory. Well, sort of.

What I Loved

On the surface this seems a typical novel about baseball but it’s so much more. A romance, a father son reconciliation, a tale of arrested development it has it all. Baseball is the backdrop but definitely not the focus which is a distinction that a lot of authors seem to struggle with. So many novels with baseball as a background to the story don’t just leave it in the background. They overpower the reader with statistics and unimportant facts which can leave the book inaccessible to non-American audiences.

The characters are extremely well drawn, particularly Mariana – she initially seems like the typical quirky maniac pixie dream girl but then her character deepens to show her motivations.  I found Ted a little irritating at first, but I have a feeling I was supposed to.   Even though I’ve read his writing before, I was still genuinely surprised at how talented a storyteller Duchovny is.

What I Didn’t Love

It seems like such a small complaint but it’s a bit of a slow burner because Ted is such an unlikable whiny character, at least at first. The novel didn’t draw me in until his father and Mariana showed up.

My Rating: 4.5 Stars (4.5 / 5)

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Re: 2016/04/05 - Bucky F*cking Dent

Post by jade1013 on Tue 26 Apr - 18:06


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Re: 2016/04/05 - Bucky F*cking Dent

Post by Duchovny on Wed 27 Apr - 0:43

thanks
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Re: 2016/04/05 - Bucky F*cking Dent

Post by sir on Tue 3 May - 8:26




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Re: 2016/04/05 - Bucky F*cking Dent

Post by jade1013 on Tue 3 May - 8:55


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Re: 2016/04/05 - Bucky F*cking Dent

Post by dreamy on Tue 3 May - 9:45

Book for baseball fans =D
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Re: 2016/04/05 - Bucky F*cking Dent

Post by jade1013 on Wed 4 May - 9:12

May 4, 2016

6 Books That Should Be On Your Radar: May 2016

Every month, the Writer’s Bone crew reviews or previews books we've read or want to read. This series may or may not also serve as a confessional for guilty pleasures and hipster novels only the brave would attempt. Feel free to share your own suggestions in the comments section or tweet us @WritersBone.

The Sympathizer by Viet Thanh Nguyen




Daniel Ford: Nugyen recently won the Pulitzer Prize for his debut novel, and for good reason. Set in the aftermath of the fall of Saigon and South Vietnam in 1975, The Sympathizer follows a double-agent refugee as he suffers through the death of close companions, shady political and military maneuverings, and his troubled family history. Since the novel also acts as a historical narrative of the end of the Vietnam War, one anticipates the violence, horror, and dysfunction; however, one might not expect the deep and dark humor Nguyen injects into his prose. The pages fly by without feeling weighted or overly somber. Horrible things befall our duplicitous hero, some as a direct result of his nefarious actions, but you can’t help rooting for him to walk away from his chosen path in one piece. The Sympathizer is a powerful mediation on brotherhood, the immigrant experience in the U.S., and, of course, war. And because his novel is so good, we won’t hold it against Nguyen that he beat out Writer’s Bone favorite David Joy for the 2016 Edgar Award for Best First Novel.

Dodgers by Bill Beverly




Sean Tuohy: Bill Beverly mixes the dark, urban violence of the inner city with the coming-of-age hopefulness and angst of The Catcher in the Rye. The book follows four teenage gangbangers from Los Angeles on a cross country journey to commit a murder. The novel is sparse and fast-paced, and moves from hardcore street crime to the lightheartedness of teenagers finding themselves in a wild world. One moment you’ll find tears welling in your eyes as you read a scene between a teenage boy and his mother, and, by the next chapter, you are gripping the book with growing tension. Dodgers can be picked up with ease, but can’t be put down lightly.

Everybody’s Fool by Richard Russo




Daniel: It’s hard for me to be objective about Richard Russo. I read Nobody’s Fool at an impressionable age as both a reader and a writer. I fell in love with the cantankerous Sully and his down-on-its-luck hometown. It’s always the first example I use when championing well-written character studies. I also have fond memories of bonding with my mother discussing the book (and the movie adaptation starring Paul Newman). I have obviously enjoyed the rest of Russo’s work—including the Pulitzer Prize-winning Empire Falls, Straight Man, and Bridge of Sighs—but there’s a bit of Nobody’s Fool’s DNA buried in my own that supersedes all the other novels.

As you might expect, I was thrilled when I learned that Russo’s recent novel Everybody’s Fool returns to Sully’s North Bath, New York. Ten years have gone by, and our favorite curmudgeon faces something that he can’t ignore or talk his way out of—a potentially life-threatening diagnosis. The early reviews of Everybody’s Fool have been fabulous, and from what I’ve read I can say that the praise is well deserved. Russo proves that when done right, returning to an age-old friend can be a blessing instead of a curse. The author’s prose and dialogue are as sharp and warm as ever, and his humor remains second to none.

I know I’m not going to be able to resist binge reading the rest of Everybody’s Fool, but I plan on savoring every page the best I can. I learned what kind of reader and writer I was while reading Nobody’s Fool. I think I’ll decide what kind of man I’ve become while reading Everybody’s Fool

A Single Happened Thing by Daniel Paisner




Daniel: Daniel Paisner's novel is nostalgically charming for anyone who has loved the game of baseball. I can’t tell you how many times I consulted Baseball-Reference.com during the two days I devoured A Single Happened Thing. I came to love baseball during the 1990s, an admittedly wild time for the sport. You had superficially beefed up sluggers, colorfully awful expansion teams, and plenty of New York Yankees championships. Into this scrum, Paisner drops in “a Manhattan book publicist who believes he's been visited by the ghost of an old-time baseball player.”

Imagine if Ray Kinsella, the main character in Shoeless Joe (the inspiration for my favorite movie “Field of Dreams”), wasn’t just thought crazy by his neighbors, but by is loving wife. Would he have risked financial ruin and built the field if it were going to threaten his marriage? Paisner explores this possibility by making David Felb’s biggest critic and doubter his hardworking, and relentlessly lucid, wife. Felb isn’t entirely alone in his delusions though. His “tomboy-ish” daughter Iona inherited his hardball heart and has a chance encounter with the mysterious Fred “Sure Shot” Dunlap, which ensures she doesn’t drive her old man right to the asylum. Their relationship is the backbone of the novel and every scene with the pair should stir even the most cynical baseball critic.

One of my favorite quotes from the novel is: "It's difficult to hit as well...but we don't give up on the notion." The same can be said for writing, don’t you think?

We're All Damaged by Matthew Norman




Gary Almeter: This book is just great. You get to spend a couple weeks in the life of Andy Carter, a complicated young man who certainly doesn't have everything together, but someone who is funny (both intellectually witty and "fall down the stairs" funny), sensitive, and determined to be the most authentic Andy Carter possible. He's simultaneously iron-willed and compliant; irreverent and sensitive; insecure and self-indulgent.

Norman tells Andy's story with confidence, adding humor to the sad parts and profundity to the funny parts. He peppers every page with intriguing pop culture references. They paint a really vivid picture of Andy and his world and his state of mind. And sometimes they're just fun. And sometimes they serve as launch pads for some real insight (like what will archeologists think of our culture when they dig up an iPod with Wham!'s "Wake Me Up Before You Go-Go" on it?). The narrative is propelled by Andy's eagerness to connect with his dying grandfather, as well as an imminent SCOTUS decision about gay marriage. Like the conundrum that is Andy, Norman makes death and equality fun topics too.

Through it all, Andy maintains an astounding sense of humor and is quick to make keen observations about the absurdities, and pain, of life in the 2010s. But it's not all absurd. There is a tenderness and genuineness to Andy that makes him, and us, grateful for the community around him.

Bucky F*cking Dent by David Duchovny




Adam Vitcavage: A lot of people might not know the dude who hunted down aliens on “The X-Files” and drank and fornicated his way through writer's block on “Californication” studied literature at both Princeton and Yale. David Duchovny actually has some other writing credits to his name, and his most recent book, Bucky F*cking Dent, is a can't miss. Duchovny says this isn't a baseball book, but a story about fathers and sons, as well as a romance set against the hardball backdrop. The titular Dent is a real-life hero or villain, depending on if you’re a Yankees or Red Sox fan, in a tiebreaker game to get into the playoffs in 1978 (Spoiler alert: Dent crushes a homer, and all the hearts in New England, over the Green Monster.) But again, this is about more than baseball. Duchovny's prose is nothing to scoff at. He brilliantly tells this story in an earnest way. Don't be surprised if you start seeing his name pop up more often in the literary world. There's no doubt that he has more fiction stored away, waiting to be read by the world.

The Writer’s Bone Library



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Re: 2016/04/05 - Bucky F*cking Dent

Post by sir on Wed 4 May - 9:21

Thanks

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Re: 2016/04/05 - Bucky F*cking Dent

Post by jade1013 on Thu 5 May - 13:02


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Re: 2016/04/05 - Bucky F*cking Dent

Post by sir on Thu 5 May - 13:02

Thanks

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Re: 2016/04/05 - Bucky F*cking Dent

Post by sir on Sat 14 May - 4:29

WOW: BUCKY F*CKING DENT



WWaiting on Wednesday is held over at Breaking the Spine, and it highlights the books bloggers are hanging out for. This week, my choice is: Bucky F*cking Dent



Because David Duchovny. Okay, yes it was out in early April, but I couldn’t resist!

I cannot express how delighted I was at the new X-Files mini series, flaws and all, because the goodness outweighed them for me. Then recently I found this book and that title and as it turns out, it’s nothing like what I expected:

Ted Fullilove, aka Mr. Peanut, is not like other Ivy League grads. He shares an apartment with Goldberg, his beloved battery-operated fish, sleeps on a bed littered with yellow legal pads penned with what he hopes will be the next great American novel, and spends the waning malaise-filled days of the Carter administration at Yankee Stadium, waxing poetic while slinging peanuts to pay the rent.

When Ted hears the news that his estranged father, Marty, is dying of lung cancer, he immediately moves back into his childhood home, where a whirlwind of revelations ensues. The browbeating absentee father of his youth is living to make up for lost time, but his health dips drastically whenever his beloved Red Sox lose. And so, with help from a crew of neighborhood old-timers and the lovely Mariana–Marty’s Nuyorican grief counselor–Ted orchestrates the illusion of a Sox winning streak, enabling Marty and the Red Sox to reverse the Curse of the Bambino and cruise their way to World Series victory. Well, sort of.

David Duchovny’s richly drawn Bucky F*cking Dent is a story of the bond between fathers and sons, Yankee fans and the Fenway faithful, and grapples with the urgent need to find our story in an age of irony and artifice. Culminating in that fateful moment in October of ’78 when the meek Bucky Dent hit his way into baseball history with the unlikeliest of home runs, this tragicomic novel demonstrates that life truly belongs to the losers–that the long shots are the ones worth betting on.

Bucky F*cking Dent is a singular tale that brims with the hilarity, poignancy, and profound solitude of modern life.

It’s about fathers and sons, or parents and their kids, I think. I think it’s going to be tender and humourous and sad too. And of course, Bucky F*ucking Dent who saved the day — I had to look him up, lol! Should I be brushing up about baseball do you think?

What do you think of this? What are you waiting for?

Editingerverything.com

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Re: 2016/04/05 - Bucky F*cking Dent

Post by jade1013 on Sat 14 May - 4:30


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Re: 2016/04/05 - Bucky F*cking Dent

Post by sir on Sun 15 May - 16:39



As spring creeps toward summer, the GeekMoms have been piling on the literary pounds. From daring acts by librarians in Timbuktu to jinn-controlled super soldiers, horses in upstate New York to learning how to land aircraft, you’re sure to find something you’ll want to pack into your suitcase this vacation season.



GeekMom Sophie was sent a copy of Bucky F*cking Dent, David Duchovny’s second novel, and wasn’t sure how she would get on with it given her almost complete lack of baseball knowledge. Set throughout the 1978 baseball season, the book follows Ted Fullilove, a peanut vendor at Yankee Stadium with an Ivy League education and aspirations of writing the Great American Novel. When he learns that his estranged father Marty is dying, Ted moves back to his childhood home to support him and the pair attempt to rekindle a difficult relationship. Ted soon discovers that his father’s health is tied to the success of his beloved Boston Red Sox, and conspires to fake a winning streak for the team with the help of friends and neighbors. It’s a ridiculous premise, but one that is pulled off with so much care, and such well-crafted characters, that the ludicrous nature of the plan is soon forgotten in the emotion of the story.

Sophie loved this book, even though she felt she missed out on a whole level of meaning from it thanks to her British, baseball-free upbringing. The smell of the stadium, the thwack of a ball smashing off a bat–these are things she has only ever experienced on television, and so that shared community history of baseball cards, box scores, and beer was lost on her. Still, Duchovny’s writing made her feel nostalgic for a thing she had never experienced, and the subtlety of Ted and Marty’s growing love for one another kept her turning the pages long into the night.

Geekdad.com

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Re: 2016/04/05 - Bucky F*cking Dent

Post by jade1013 on Sun 15 May - 16:40


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Re: 2016/04/05 - Bucky F*cking Dent

Post by sir on Fri 20 May - 11:05

David Duchovny’s Bucky F*cking Dent reveals a literary star


JAMES MCNAMARATHE AUSTRALIAN

MAY 21, 2016 12:00AM



Reviewers of David Duchovny’s first novel, Holy Cow, slung plenty of ink about him being an actor. Fair enough — Hollywood is cool. But just behind that is a whiff of “celebrity having a go at writing”, which is invidious because, with a pair of Ivy League literature degrees, old mate Dave has a better literary pedigree than most of his reviewers. So I’m not writing about Duchovny the actor, because that isn’t relevant: Bucky F*cking Dent proves that Duchovny is a novelist, and a damn good one.

Holy Cow was a wry, piss-takey fable; deeply enjoyable, but jokey enough that Duchovny could have stepped away, pride intact, and dismissed it as a lark if it had tanked. With Bucky F*cking Dent, it feels as if Duchovny has sat down at the proverbial typewriter, opened a vein, and bled.

The result is an excellent literary novel of wit, heart and emotional depth.

Set in 1978, Bucky F*cking Dent is about Ted Lord Fenway Fullilove, a “quirky dude with a BA in English literature from Columbia who works as a peanut vendor in Yankee Stadium while he slaves away on the great American novel”. Ted’s life isn’t glamorous; he’s fat, clad in old tie-dye, drives a Corolla with plastic bags for windows, and smokes too much weed in a crappy apartment. His closest relationship is with a Grateful Dead tape.

His prose is good but his stories aren’t: the heart is missing. “You write well. About nothing,” Ted’s agent says. When Ted’s estranged ­father, the magnificently profane Marty, is diagnosed with terminal lung cancer, Ted moves home to care for him, helped by a beguiling “death nurse” and love interest, Mariana. A well-trodden narrative, you might say. But not the way Duchovny handles it.

The novel’s surface conceit is baseball. Whenever the Red Sox win, Marty’s health improves. But as anyone who knows baseball knows (i.e. not me), the Sox never win. So to keep his father alive, Ted plans to give Marty an elusive Red Sox World Series win by faking the results — replacing scores in papers, playing winning games on VCRs. The book’s dust jacket places this caper at the novel’s core, but it’s really just a McGuffin — a plot device. Duchovny’s novel is much darker and more emotionally complex than that.



Back in his childhood home, Ted grows steadily closer to a father he believed neglected him. Within their rude banter, Ted discovers Marty’s own deep frustrations: a would-be novelist, he wrote ads instead of books to support his family. Ted also learns that Marty’s long-term disengagement stemmed from rejecting his true love to stay with Ted and his mother. Discovering that Marty was a much better father than he had believed prompts Ted to unravel himself and confront his skewed life story, a process that quickens him artistically and psychologically. But Duchovny goes deeper still, into the big stuff: art, failure, loyalty, the persistence and fragility of love, mortality, grief, and life, the “final hopeless, glorious charade”. As Marty gets sicker, father and son are shucked of their banter and brought raw to each other, as flawed but loving men.

These emotional storylines are unfurled with the narrative skill of a screenwriter/director, but delivered in air-punchingly good prose. Within a passage, Duchovny silverfishes between wit and lyricism, blending highbrow and low, taking literature seriously and then poking fun from the other side of the sentence. Ted can observe his father “woken from his slumber, vulnerable, his dreams still clinging to him like … cigarette smoke”, then call him an “Ornery motherf..ker”. This careful tension in the prose between comedy and pathos communicates one of the book’s main concerns: the difficulty of men communicating love for each other. (I still punch my brother “hello”.)

Bucky F*cking Dent is an exciting novel. It’s also promising: Duchovny flexes a literary voice in a way that anticipates an extraordinary third book (no pressure, mate). There are still some kinks. Notably, while Ted and Marty are writers, they reach too often for highbrow allegories. As a literary type, I can’t say I’ve ever cited William Blake in my subconscious musings. But maybe I’m just missing out. This self-conscious erudition feels brittle, like Duchovny justifying his place at the literary table. But he doesn’t need to cite the great and the good for that, his writing does it for him.

Too much new American fiction is pretentious, all lip-synching the same mumblecore ­banalities. And as Ted’s agent says, “Life is too f..king short to read books like [that].” that. Duchovny has written the kind of novel I’ve wanted for ages: swaggering, literary, romantic, funny, warm-blooded, sad and true. Bucky F*cking Dent is very f*cking good — it’s rock ’n’ roll. And it’ll make you call your dad in the middle of the night just to hear his voice.

James McNamara is a Sydney-based reviewer.

Bucky F*cking Dent

By David Duchovny

Farrar, Straus & Giroux, 304pp, $37.99

Theaustralian.com

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Re: 2016/04/05 - Bucky F*cking Dent

Post by jade1013 on Fri 20 May - 11:06


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Re: 2016/04/05 - Bucky F*cking Dent

Post by sir on Tue 31 May - 3:12

David Duchovny’s ‘Bucky ____ Dent’

By JOSEPH SALVATOREMAY 31, 2016



BUCKY ____ DENT
By David Duchovny
296 pp. Farrar, Straus & Giroux. $26.

A fiction teacher once told us that we should know every detail about the characters we create, down to the kind of bath towel they prefer, even if the towel never appears in the story. That advice smacked of Stanislavsky’s “method,” wherein actors try to learn everything about a character’s background — first kiss, favorite smell — before stepping onstage. I wondered, a bit enviously, if actors who tried their hand at writing fiction would invent characters with greater depth than we mere scribblers.

I’m not sure about all actor-authors, but in “Bucky ____ Dent,” his second novel, the TV star David Duchovny so believably brings to life his slacker, pot-­smoking, 30-something protagonist, Ted Fullilove, that we feel for Ted the way we feel for most slacker, pot-smoking, 30-somethings: Get a life.

The problem is that Ted thinks he has one. When we meet him he’s selling peanuts at Yankee Stadium during the 1978 baseball season. He’s a devoted follower of the Grateful Dead; he has a ponytail, a “soft belly” and “man breasts” (due, we’re told, to hormonal imbalances caused by chronic pot smoking). He’s also a highly literate Ivy League graduate who reads the modernists and wants only enough money to keep his “brokedown” Bronx apartment so he can write the Great American Novel (always a dubious aspiration). But in fact, Ted’s already got several novels in progress, including the 536-page “Mr. Ne’er-Do-Well” and another that comes in at 1,171 pages and weighs over 12 pounds. So maybe “slacker” doesn’t apply to his writing, but it applies to every other part of his life, especially relationships. He had one true love, now gone; his pet is a battery-operated goldfish; his mother is dead; he hasn’t spoken to his father in half a decade. And his literary agent hates his novels. Ted’s life is ready for a shake-up.

But that will be slow to come. In a short early chapter, we follow Ted, after a game, into the changing room, where he takes off his work uniform (a cardboard box with shoulder straps made to look like a peanut bag) and dons his “life uniform” (tie-dye shirt, bluejeans and sandals). In terms of dramatic action, that’s pretty much all that happens, but in terms of character background, Duchovny brings us so close to Ted we feel as though we might have caught a contact buzz.

Much of the novel’s first half moves at this pace and in this mode. (In another chapter, Ted walks from the locker room to his car in the parking lot — but, oh, what exposition fills those few pages!) The opening may well be Duchovny’s sly nod to the books Ted reads: Virginia Woolf also privileged character development over plot development to give us Clarissa Dalloway’s rich interiority. But when Ted gets a phone call from a grief counselor at Beth Israel hospital, telling him that his long-estranged father, Marty, is dying of lung cancer, both Ted and the novel pick up the pace.

From there, Duchovny finds his rhythm, balancing crisp dialogue with some truly hilarious scenes that draw on the small cast of colorful secondary characters. The real drama is between Ted and Marty. After a hospital-room reunion, where Ted is shocked to see how “skinny and gray” his father is, Ted moves back to his childhood home in Park Slope to care for the cantankerous widower whom Ted, for complicated reasons, still hotly resents. Secrets are revealed, love interests appear, diaries are discovered, joints are passed between father and son, and life’s big issues — love, sex, marriage, parenting, death, baseball — are examined.

It all has the potential for some sappy feel-good melodrama just in time for Father’s Day; but somehow, like Bucky Dent himself, Duchovny hits an unexpected home run. Marty, you see, is a Red Sox fan in the year of a legendary Red Sox collapse. As his health declines with every game the team loses that season, Ted’s creativity finds its true expression, and he gets a life by trying to bring meaning to another.

Joseph Salvatore, the books editor for The Brooklyn Rail, is the author of the story collection “To Assume a Pleasing Shape.” He teaches at the New School.

Nytimes.com

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Re: 2016/04/05 - Bucky F*cking Dent

Post by jade1013 on Tue 31 May - 4:40


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Re: 2016/04/05 - Bucky F*cking Dent

Post by Duchovny on Tue 31 May - 7:13

thanks
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