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Paperback The Dick Gibson Show Book

ISBN: 1564781984

ISBN13: 9781564781987

The Dick Gibson Show

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Format: Paperback

Condition: Very Good

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Book Overview

National Book Award finalist: Look who's on the "Dick Gibson Radio Show": Arnold the Memory Expert ("I've memorized the entire West Coast shoreline - except for cloud cover and fog banks"). Bernie Perk, the burning pharmacist. Henry Harper, the nine-year old orphan millionaire, terrified of being adopted. The woman whose life revolves around pierced lobes. An evil hypnotist. Swindlers. Con-men. And Dick Gibson himself. Anticipating talk radio and...

Customer Reviews

5 ratings

A megahertz of modulating mesmerosis

Dick Gibson, who may be considered one of Elkin's more "normal" character creations--with the exception of an occasional immodesty and mania, hosts a radio show that magnetizes the electrons of American weirdness straight towards him. The book opens in a hilarious scenario with Dick as a dj in a rural radio station in a remote area of Nebraska so sparsely populated that all who live in the area and own all the land are in the same family, and they actually created the station to supply their own entertainment and family news wire service. From there we have a WWII story of the extinct dodo in Madagascar until Dick finally lands his regular show. The centerpiece of the book is one evening's show with booked guests who seem to have a compulsion to reveal intimate, humiliating, even criminal episodes of their life, each alternately shocking, and humane, and told amidst a studio of strangely increasing tension that the scene's culmination is like you've stayed up all night and heard this all yourself coming out of the radio. Unbelievable. As an aspiring writer I remain in awe of Elkin; as a reader I am enthralled.

A Master At The Top of His Game

Elkin is not an easy read, but he's funny, brilliant, dazzling and dizzying, the kind of writer that might emerge if Proust were cloned with I.B. Singer, or maybe Damon Runyon. This book shows him at the top of his game. His sheer energy and love of language blasts through on every page. Forget about plot. Elkin is to writing what Cirque du Soleil is to entertainment. If you like well-plotted books that will leave you with a moral or a memorable story, Elkin may not be for you. If you like language for language's sake and appreciate sentences sculpted by a lingual Michelangelo and marvelous displays of craft, try this book. Elkin is a limited writer and an acquired taste, but within his limitations he was the best. I know of no other writer who could, for example, write a novel about terminally ill children (The Magic Kingdom) and make it funny and moving without ever getting anywhere near sentimentality or the kind of somber earnestness you'd expect. If you like this book, try Magic Kingdom and also Criers and Kibbitzers, a short story collection of his.

What a find!

Not being familiar with Elkin or his work, it was a pleasant surprise to read 'Dick Gibson.' Elkin has an amazing imagination, and a wonderful ear for wordplay. The 'guests' on Gibson's radio shows just can't help but reveal their deepest, darkest (usually sexual) secrets. And Gibson is too smart to step in their way. This book is amazingly prescient about the advent of 'entertainment' like Jerry Springer, "reality" programs, and all those radio shows people call just hear themselves think. It's a shame this programming has none of Elkin's sardonic wit - or his intelligence. I'm looking forward to reading more Elkin.

His imagination was outrageous...

This is not quite Mrs. Ted Bliss but in some respects it is probably better. I don't know - I loved them both, but being a woman perhaps liked Mrs. Ted better. Still - Stanley Elkin is a man with a jumpin' mind! The twists and turns of this novel are magnificent - and what I love most is that his writing is not predictable. You keep reading just to see what new trick he'll pull.

Sidesplitting masterpiece

The neglect accorded this brilliant novel is criminal. I'll put it simply: you will *never*, repeat *never* read a funnier book. Not only is it crammed with gags that would make the Farrelly Bros. blush, it is also a genuine transcript of the human need to communicate. Just wait till you meet Bernie Perk....BUY THIS BOOK NOW!!!
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