This explosively entertaining memoir abounds in gossip, satire, historical apercus , and trenchant observations. Vidal’s compelling narrative. Vidal’s account of his first 39 years includes his reminiscences of a host of prominent Gore Vidal, Author Penguin Books $20 (p) ISBN Aside from being an essayist, novelist and screenwriter, Gore Vidal in his memoir Palimpsest that he was “attracted to adolescent males”.

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Palimpsest by Gore Vidal

E ce lo fa sapere. Topics Gore Vidal Opinion. Vidal was prissily fastidious about the meaning of words and his suggested substitution can be taken as a confession that nothing and no one was erotically off-limits.

One is propelled along by the memoirs and his current ruminating on writing his memoirs which he does along the way. Overall, I enjoyed this book and would recommend it, if you are interested in reading about Gore’s experiences and stories about other writers Kerouac, Bur I learned that Gore Vidal liked John Kennedy, but was not a fan of Bobby. His go This has a surface of glitter and wit, written by a man who is as acerbic, clever and a great hater.

But Vidal does kee The worst part about this book is that in it, GV dishes out scandal like the rent is due tomorrow. Gore Vidal had connections to a lot of famous people Truman Capote, the Beats, Kennedys and he liked expounding on the impressions they made in his life.

We come to understand how divided a self he is; not just as between love and death but as between literature and politics, America and the world, the ancient and the modern, the sacred and the profane. Simply a delight, as only he can deliver. His life has taken him through Wars, Hollywood, into Politics and back out again to return to serious writing with his novel Julian, which is more or less where the book ends.

I just don’t buy it. If you take him for the queen he is, it’s all very silly stuff and not to be taken seriously. The full text of this book review is only available to subscribers of the London Review of Books.


Book Club of the Air: Gore Vidal’s ‘Palimpsest’

He is a great name dropper but it is done in a way that makes you feel that the big names are impressing other people gorre dropping his name into conversations. He was a lifelong isolationist Democrat. Vidal ran for political office twice and was a longtime political critic. Vidal offhandedly writes that he has purchased a cemetery plot for himself in the same cemetery in which Jimmie Trimble was buried all those decades ago.

He continues to be the most erudite voice of the anti-establishment. I’m not a huge fan of Gore’s novels, but this memoir, and to a slightly lesser extent its followup Point to Point Navigation is fascinating and entertaining. Feb 26, Jill rated it really liked it.

Written in the sumptuously arch manner familiar to anyone who has seen a Vidal clip on YouTube, the memoir establishes a warm if prickly tone, and treats the reader as an intelligent confidant e for the duration. Perhaps foolishly, I didn’t expect the quality of the book.

Al Jock, Jake, Jack, mi son persa. At the start of our story in the present, as an old man he meets with Jimmie’s mother. Contact us for rights and issues inquiries. It is easy to idealize someone who has died.


Vidal is seemingly winded by grief when she shows him a picture Jimmie kept of her in his pocket – not because of what the photo represents, but because it is curved to the shape of his body. Fun, if not necessarily truthful, read.

It is what allowed him the freedom to produce a wide range of work, from Myra Breckenridge a one finger salute to the entertainment industryto Visit to a Small Planet, and historical fiction, Lincoln, being his most famous. Vidal’s novels fell into two distinct camps: His third novel, The City and the Pillaroutraged conservative critics as one of the first major American novels to feature unambiguous homosexuality.

His memories of Jackie and JFK are endlessly fascinating.

It’s possible, of course, that any young men involved would have had no idea that they were pleasuring the author of Myra Breckinridge and United States: He was also known for his patrician manner, Transatlantic accent, and witty aphorisms.


None of that is funny at all and the best that Vidal, escaping to the libraries of Europe, could muster was a sort of wry cynicism where the pen, if not mightier than the sword, was at least the more honourable alternative.

Interviews with Jon Wiener. What is an exile cosmopolitan doing in this Wasp rockery in the District of Columbia?

Forster on the other hand, tend to get the cold shoulder for their frousty snobbishness. So naturally he was also hated because he was feared, all to little avail of course. The list goes on for a while longer but I will have to be lazy and spare myself the chore of typing it. Threads collapsed expanded unthreaded. I like him and admire his skill and intelligence.

Nov 18, Thirstyicon rated it really liked it Recommends it for: Two of the better one-liner scenes: Paperbackpages. Lee Radziwill whose secret service codename was supposedly ‘rancidass’ is so loathed that her presence dominates the Kennedy Administration for him and therefore us.

A chapter that will stick with me described his last visit with Allen Ginsberg, who I find quite visionary, and casually detailed Ginsberg’s health problems as an elderly man.

But Vidal does keep focus on his own life, though it does veer off that path multiple times. The list of friends and contemporaries reads like some kind of insane post second World War Who’s Who.

Book Club of the Air: Gore Vidal’s ‘Palimpsest’ : NPR

Still, you go in knowing what you pslimpsest getting, and the writing is sharp. The metaphor of a palimpsest for writing a memoir is an ingenious one, and there are scraps of Gore Vidal’s well-textured parchment that are genuinely fascinating.

It is to be found in Rock Creek Cemetery in Washington.

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