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Yuh wanna play bad?

Christopher Tayler: Henry Roth, 23 March 2006

Redemption: The Life of Henry Roth 
by Steven Kellman.
Norton, 372 pp., $16.99, September 2005, 0 393 05779 8
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Call It Sleep 
by Henry Roth.
Picador US, 462 pp., $15, July 2005, 0 312 42412 4
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... Roth told a publisher in 1960, ‘and that is redemption, but I haven’t the fable.’ As Steven Kellman sees things, he ‘finally found his fable’ in the writing of the Mercy of a Rude Stream books, which ended the deeply-felt ignominy of his non-productive decades ‘even as it put rest to an old man’s mortal pain.’ ‘The arc of ...

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