Saul Bellow’s Ravelstein


I just remembered this great book I read a few years back:

Abe Revelstein is a brilliant professor at a prominent Midwestern university and a man who glories in training the movers and shakers of the political world. He has lived grandly and ferociously – and much beyond his means. His close freiend Chick has suggested that he put forth a book of his convictions about the ideas which sustain humankind, or kill it, and much to Ravelstein’s surprise he does and becomes a millionnaire. Ravelstein suggests in turn that Chick write a memoir of life of him, and during the course of a celebratory trip to Paris the two share thoughts on mortality, philosophy and history, love and friends, old and new, and vaudeville routines from the remote past. The mood turns more somber once they have returned to the Midwest and Ravelstein succumbs to AIDS, and Chich himself nearly dies. {Deply insightful and always moving Saul Bellow’s novel is a journey through love and memory. It is brave, dark and bleakly funny:an elegy to freindshp and lives well (or badly) lived.)