This little sort of tone poem captures some of the beauty and some of the meanness of New York life. I didn't come away from THE COLOSSUS OF NEW YORK as being negative toward the city, but even if Mr. Whitehead were, we New Yorkers need our cranks and curmudgeons. It makes us part of who we are, after all.
The free style works MOST of the time. When it doesn't, it really doesn't. (It is no coincidence that the most straight-forward section, the introduction, is the most superb!) THE COLOSSUS OF NEW YORK doesn't have the lyricism of E.B. White's THIS IS NEW YORK, but it doesn't pretend to want to be like it, anyway. Colson Whitehead's piece is more like Whitman's poetry, as he rambled along the old downtown streets and piers, and recorded his scenes and his feelings about them. Yes, this book could have been greater, but it doesn't take away from the power much of it has. So if you're looking for a history of or guidebook to New York City, this is not the book. But if you're looking for the evocative power of New York, written in a personal, lyrical style, you won't find many better than THE COLOSSUS OF NEW YORK.
- Hardcover: 158 pages
- Publisher: Doubleday (1 October 2003)
- Language: English
- ISBN-10: 0385507941
- ISBN-13: 978-0385507943
- Product Dimensions: 13.5 x 2 x 19.9 cm
- Boxed-product Weight: 717 g
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