Gapers Block has ceased publication.

Gapers Block published from April 22, 2003 to Jan. 1, 2016. The site will remain up in archive form. Please visit Third Coast Review, a new site by several GB alumni.
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Sunday, December 5

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On the Web Wed Jul 29 2009

1971 NBA Winner: Mr. Sammler's Planet

The National Book Awards remembers their 1971 winner, and the third and final win for Saul Bellow, Mr. Sammler's Planet.

mr sammler's planet.jpgSays Craig Morgan Teicher, poet and member of the board of the National Book Critics Circle: "It's impossible not to see a bit of oneself in Artur Sammler, a Holocaust survivor living out the end of his life--he's in his 70s when we meet him--uptown in New York City, where the subways are intolerable and the buses only a bit better, until a confrontation with a pickpocket makes the buses impossible as well.He lives with his grown daughter, an eccentric, irresponsible, unmarried woman, and tries to find what good he can in a world that has more than proved its evil.

"It's impossible, too, not to recognize how alone Sammler is, and how his aloneness is something we all have in common. A book like this--and it's a narrow shelf indeed that can hold it and its small company--may be the only way we can share that deep solitude."

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