The Maples Stories, My Father's Tears and Other Stories, & Endpoint and Other Poems - John Updike,

Suddenly, without foreshadowing, he died.  I mean John Updike, whose carefully crafted flow of adjectives and adverbs, bursting with resonance, continue to give so much aesthetic pleasure.  He wrote movingly about his mother’s death but seemed to leave us with a blank canvas at his own sudden exit.  But then Random House surprised us with three volumes put together in the year before his final deadline.  The author and publisher, it appears, stealthily planned this canonical bequest.  

From his midlife, The Maples Stories (Everyman, $15), those poignant linked short fictions of a disintegrating marriage, originally—30 years ago—titled Too Far to Go, has been reissued with a new addition, “Grandparenting,” along with Updike’s reassurance that the Maples are “both still alive and look well, considering.”  My Father’s Tears (Knopf, $25.95), Updike’s last short story collection, is quintessential Updike: thinly veiled autobiography. The volume’s final story leaves us with a benediction as a toast is drunk to the visible world, “impending disappearance from it be damned.”  Finally, Endpoint (Knopf, $25) is a book of poems Updike wrote in the last seven years of his life. I loved all of them, especially Updike’s own valedictory farewell, “Requiem”: For life’s a shabby subterfuge,/ and death is real, and dark, and huge,/ the shock of it will register/ Nowhere but where it will occur.”

The Maples Stories (Everyman's Library Pocket Classics Series) By John Updike Cover Image
$22.00
ISBN: 9780307271761
Availability: Backordered
Published: Everyman's Library - August 4th, 2009

My Father's Tears: And Other Stories By John Updike Cover Image
$17.00
ISBN: 9780345513809
Availability: Special Order—Subject to Availability
Published: Random House Trade Paperbacks - May 25th, 2010

Endpoint and Other Poems By John Updike Cover Image
$25.00
ISBN: 9780307272867
Availability: Special Order—Subject to Availability
Published: Knopf - March 31st, 2009