Wednesday, September 28, 2011

Robert Coover's Classic Baseball Novel Back in Print

One of the great baseball novels of all time - Robert Coover's The Universal Baseball Association, Inc. J. Henry Waugh, Proprieter - is back in print, in a new edition published this week by The Overlook Press.

Robert Coover, one of the most admired writers of our generation, is the author of many novels, most recently Noir, and has also written short story collections and plays. His work has won the William Faulkner Award and an American Academy of Arts and Letters Award.


Matt Weiland's recent essay, "A Veteran Baseball Novel Comes off the Bench," in The New York Times Book Review (August 26), pays homage to Coover's amazing, and prescient, 1968 novel:

"Right from the start the book nearly matches On the Road for sheer electricity . . . Coover made baseball on the page seem three-dimensional, exulting in what he called the game's 'almost perfect balance between offense and defense.' He captured what Philip Roth, in a 1973 New York Times essay on baseball, called 'its longueurs and thrills, its spaciousness, its suspensefulness, its heroics, its nuances, its lingo, its 'characters,' its peculiarly hypnotic tedium'. . . The genius of the novel is in how Coover revels in the sun-bright vitality of the world Waugh has created, full of drink and lust and dirty limericks and doubles down the line -- and yet brings Waugh face to face with its darkest truths."

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